NEW YORK (Jul. 21)
The first Israeli team ever to participate in the International Summer Special Olympics Games held in Baton Rouge, La., July 12-18 is returning home with eight medals — four gold, two silver and two bronze. More than 4,000 athletes from all over the world participated in the tournament under the auspices of the Joseph P. Kennedy Foundation.
The Israeli team was sponsored by AKIM, the Association for the Rehabilitation of the Mentally Handicapped in Israel. The first gold medal winner at the Louisiana event was Meir Rahman who broke his own record for the 40-meter soft-ball throw.
Moshe Varsono and Eli Ben Simon both won gold medals for the 50-meter dash; Daphna Wittenberg and Yona Gavra won silver medals; and Ofra Ezra won a bronze medal in the some event. Ben Simon also picked up a bronze medal for the 200-meter race.
The final gold medal was won by the Israel women’s relay team consisting of Aliza Twirdin, Yon a Gavra, Daphna Wittenberg and Ofra Ezra.