For Jamie Hathcock of Stanly County, Special Olympics has become a large part of his everyday life. Since he was eight years old, Hathcock has participated in every sport Special Olympics offers, including his favorite sport of track and field, and was one of the first golfers in Stanly County. Over the last 33 years, Hathcock has put his heart and soul into being a great athlete, teammate and leader.
Hathcock took his love for Special Olympics and went the extra mile. When Special Olympics Stanly County held a local fundraiser, Hathcock decided to reach out to his community to help raise money. After visiting business after business, Hathcock raised nearly $1,400.
“I shared how much Special Olympics means to me with each person I talked to,” said Hathcock.
With his efforts, Hathcock hoped he could help others have an experience with Special Olympics like he has. All of his years participating in Special Olympics have given him memories to last a lifetime, and one stands out among the rest.
Every year Hathcock joins local law enforcement as they carry the Flame of Hope to Special Olympics Stanly County’s Spring Games. Even after participating in the Torch Run many times, the excitement Hathcock gets beforehand is always the same.
“I’ve done it a lot, but I just love delivering the Flame to the Games,” expressed Hathcock. “Running is my favorite sport.”
And his passion for running has carried him beyond Stanly County and even beyond Special Olympics North Carolina state-level competitions. After a teammate got injured, Hatthcock stepped in to compete in the 4/100 relay at SONC’s 2015 Summer Games. That experience led the team to the 2016 Penn Relays in Philadelphia.
“My favorite part of the trip was running up the same steps as Rocky!” said Hathcock.
When he isn’t competing or practicing, Hathcock enjoys fixing up his friends’ cars, especially if they are older models that are rare. One day, Hathcock hopes to be able to own a car with a big motor and a lot of power.
From fundraising to running to fixing cars, Hathcock has truly enjoyed the last 33 years he has spent in Special Olympics. He truly believes that he would not be the man he is today without the support of his teammates, Special Olympics Stanly County, or the other friends he has made along the way.
Congratulations on being named SONC’s 2017 May Athlete of the Month, Jamie!
Car- A Corvette is his dream car
Sports team- UNC Chapel Hill Tar Heels!
Season- Deer hunting season