Houston’s Ashley Billard earned a Bronze medal for Special Olympics USA in the 800M Run with a third-place time of 3:44.74, on Thursday morning at Katherine B. Loker Stadium. Vanja Zelenik (Slovenia) claimed the Gold medal (03:28.19) and Laura Cook (USA- Southern California) took Silver (03:38.12).
Billard, 29, became the first Special Olympics Texas athlete to win a medal at the 2015 World Games, which are being held in Los Angeles on the campuses of UCLA and USC.
The Houston native will compete in the 1500M Run later this week. Day and time are yet to be announced.
Billard is making her second appearance at the World Games, having also been a member of Special Olympics USA in 2007.
About the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games
With 7,000 athletes and 3,000 coaches representing 177 countries, along with 30,000 volunteers and an anticipated 500,000 spectators, the 2015 Special Olympics World Games - being staged in Los Angeles July 25 - August 2, 2015 - will be the largest sports and humanitarian event anywhere in the world in 2015, and the single biggest event in Los Angeles since the 1984 Olympic Games. The 2015 Special Olympics World Games, with the unparalleled spirit, enthusiasm, teamwork, joy and displays of courage and skill that are hallmarks of all Special Olympics events, will feature 25 Olympic-style sports in venues throughout the Los Angeles region. The Opening Ceremony, to be held July 25, 2015 in the historic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, site of the 1932 and 1984 Olympic Games, is expected to attract 80,000 spectators. On April 30, 2014, LA2015 and ESPN announced a global programming deal that will see ESPN bring coverage of World Games to millions of fans around the world. LA2015, the Games Organizing Committee, is a recognized 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. For more information on the 2015 Special Olympics World Games, including volunteer and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.LA2015.org and on social with #ReachUpLA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
About Special Olympics Texas
Special Olympics Texas (SOTX) is a privately funded non-profit organization that changes lives through the power of sport by encouraging and empowering people with intellectual disabilities, promoting acceptance for all, and fostering communities of understanding and respect. SOTX provides continuing opportunities for more than 53,400 children and adults with intellectual disabilities throughout the Lone Star State to realize their potential, develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage and experience joy and friendship. To learn more, visit www.specialolympicstexas.org or call 800.876.5646. Engage with us on: Twitter @SOTexas; fb.com/SpecialOlympicsTX; youtube.com/specialolympicstexas. Visit the SOTX – Greater Houston Area Facebook page atfb.com/SOTX4.
Coca-Cola Refreshments, Food Town, H-E-B Tournament of Champions,
Law Enforcement Torch Run, Sam’s Club and Walmart