Darby Alumni Wins Gold In Special Olympics
Class of 2015 Darby Alumni Jabari Wilson is representing Team USA this month as he competes in Abu Dhabi for the 2019 World Special Olympics.
The World Special Olympics began in 1968, and it is the highest stage of competition for athletes competing with intellectual disabilities. The Special Olympics is the world’s largest humanitarian sporting event, and the Special Olympics says they are “a global movement which focuses on the empowerment of People of Determination with intellectual disabilities through the power of sport”.
Wilson has been a top Special Olympics athlete for some time now, starting when he was 8 years old. He won a gold medal at the USA Special Olympics in the pentathlon, which helped him qualify for the World Special Olympics. Wilson hoped to continue his string of success as his family went to watch him in Abu Dhabi.
On Tuesday, March 12th, Wilson was able to capitalize on his opportunity, winning a gold medal in his field’s highest stage. Wilson competed in many events but won his medal in his specialty event, the pentathlon. This gold medal marked the highlight of Wilson’s career, and is arguably the most notable recent achievement for both Darby alumni and Hilliard residents.
Wilson made a lasting impression here at Darby with his drive and passion. He participated in both football and track in high school, and track coach Matthew Fox talked about the determination Wilson had when he was a student here.
“He actually balanced a lot; he was still doing his Special Olympics and track simultaneously,” Fox said. “He would practice who knows how many hours a week. He would be there Monday through Sunday, entire weeks. It shows his work ethic, it’s actually why he ended up getting voted to be one of the hammer winners for that year for our team, which goes to the hardest working kids.”
It is no surprise Wilson was hardworking and highly accomplished in his time here at Darby. Wilson is truly passionate about athletics. You may recognize him if you visit the local Hilliard YMCA, where Wilson works and volunteers.
Wilson has yet to compete in his final event, the 4x100m relay, which will take place on Wednesday March 20th. His family will be cheering hard as Wilson looks to cap off a very successful week in Abu Dhabi.