Three Athletes Succeed In Special Olympics USA Games

June 26, 2014
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Three local athletes participated in the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games last week in New Jersey.

Over three thousand athletes traveled from across the nation to take part in the games. Team Indiana consisted of eighty-five individuals, including Becky Cashman, Christa Mullins and Jacob Eldridge.

The three qualified for the games by first being nominated by their local Special Olympics coordinator, Greg Townsend, and winning a gold medal in their respective sport during the 2013 Special Olympics Indiana Summer Games in Terre Haute.

27-year-old Christa Mullins of Dillsboro, and 24-year-old Becky Cashman of Rising Sun, competed in aquatics during the seven-day event.

Both were part of Team Indiana’s 4 X 50 yard Freestyle team along with fellow Hoosiers, Katie Williams and Victoria Roberts. The relay team captured the Silver Medal on Thursday, June 19th.

Individually, Mullins competed in the 50 yard Breaststroke receiving the fifth place ribbon, the 100 yard Freestyle receiving the Bronze Medal and in the 50 yard Freestyle taking home the Silver Medal.

Cashman competed in the 100 yard Individual Medley and the 100 yard Freestyle capturing a Bronze Medal in each, and on Friday, June 20th, the last day of competition, she took home the Gold Medal in the 100 yard Breaststroke.

“I don’t think she’ll stop smiling for a year,” said Cashman’s mother, Anne. “It was the best thing in the world on top of the experience of going to the Games.”

Eldridge, 17, of Sunman, competed in the 1500 Meter Run taking sixth place, the 400 Meter Dash taking fifth place, and the 800 Meter Run to receive a Bronze Medal.

“My eyes swelled with tears of joy when I saw Jacob receive his medal,” said Eldridge’s father, Clint Eldridge. “Words cannot express how thankful I and Jacob’s mother are for this opportunity. Jacob’s participation in Special Olympics has increased his confidence level,” added Eldridge.

Jacob was also part of Team Indiana’s 4 X 400 Meter Relay Team with fellow Hoosiers, Erin Gunnick, Jose Newman and Andrew Peterson. The team received the Silver Medal in the last track and field event of the games on Thursday June 19th.

Team Indiana was welcomed home by hundreds of fans at the Indianapolis International Airport Saturday afternoon.

“There has been no greater joy than to watch Christa compete on a national level,” said Barb Mullins, Christa’s mother. She and her husband, Gary Cashman, credits Special Olympics for their daughter’s achievements not only in the pool, but also in her personal development.

FOX Sports will broadcast a one-hour special chronicling the games through the eyes of competing athletes on Monday, June 30 at 7 p.m. It airs on Fox Sports 1 and is titled “Celebrating Champions: 2014 Special Olympic Games.”

On Monday, July 28th at the Hidden Valley Golf Club the local delegation will be hosting A “Revealing Champions” golf scramble fundraiser will be held at Hidden Valley Golf Club on Monday, July 28. Learn more by visiting , where Christa, Becky and Jacob will be available for a meet and great. To learn more about thegolf scramble or to enter a team, please visit

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