Special Olympics Canada | Olympiques Spéciaux Canada
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12 floor hockey players

were brought to Chicago by Harold Smith to represent Canada at the first International Special Olympics in 1968

1968 The year Special Olympics was founded

by Eunice Kennedy Shriver.

Team Canada

Special Olympics Canada Saddened by the Passing of Supporter and Champion, The Honourable Jim Flaherty

Special Olympics Canada Saddened by the Passing of Supporter and Champion, The Honourable Jim Flaherty

Special Olympics Canada (SOC) is deeply saddened by the passing of a passionate champion and advocate, Minister Jim Flaherty. We extend our sincerest condolences to Minister Flaherty’s family, friends and colleagues in this difficult time.

Special Olympics in Canada will miss an impassioned and committed supporter. While seeking increased financial support for the delivery of programs and competitions for athletes with an intellectual disability, Minister Flaherty played a vital role, providing counsel and encouragement. In the recent budget, Minister Flaherty and the Government of Canada approved significant additional funding for Special Olympics Canada, which will allow our organization to grow and reach even more individuals with an intellectual disability across the country. Minister Flaherty believed in the transformative power of sport to change lives, which he demonstrated through his involvement with Special Olympics, among other organizations. He understood the value of an inclusive and respectful society. Minister Flaherty was an integral part of Parliament Hill and a great Canadian.

“The entire Special Olympics family are overcome by the loss of an amazing champion and friend,” said Special Olympics Canada Chief Executive Officer, Sharon Bollenbach. “He was an incredible advocate of sport for all Canadians, his actions speaking even louder than his words. We are sending our condolences to Minister Flaherty’s family and friends during this very trying time. He leaves a remarkable legacy and will be profoundly missed.”