Special Spartans: A Life Changing Experience

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Written by: Luke W.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/luke.walsh.549

Hello, my name is Spartan Law, also known as Superman! I started my OCR journey in 2012 and after my first race, I was hooked! Pushing myself further than my comfort zone and what I feel I can do is a rush in itself! As I got more involved with Spartan life, I realized there was much more to this sport than just what I can do to and for myself.

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In 2015, I somehow stumbled upon a group of extraordinary individuals who call themselves Spartan superheroes (SPECIAL SPARTANS). I was like, “These guys wear capes? I’m in!” After learning a little more about them, I realized these are people I want to align myself with. Special Spartans is a core of amazing people who selflessly donate their time, money and passion to individuals who sometimes get pushed aside or overlooked because they may not seem the same as the average person (who wants to be average anyway?). I don’t want to mention any names, but I must give credit where credit is due. A huge thank you to Anthony Galasso, Joe Galasso, Evan and Skywalker for being incredible, selfless people that made this cause what it is. THANK YOU!

I started my Special Spartan journey in July of 2015 at the Palmerton Super with some incredible Spartans, Wonder Woman, Captain America, Bat Girl, Wolverine, Spiderman, Cyclops and Thor, to name a few! It is truly an incredible experience to see someone who may struggle though life more than others raise their hands to the sky with an “I’m on top of the world” feeling!

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I was able to race with an awesome young man who just competed in the Special Olympics a week prior and thought this race would be a piece of cake! I admired his confidence but was blown away by his perseverance when he crossed the finish line and realized what he just went through! Way to earn your medal!

April of 2016 was the second anniversary of Special Spartan superheroes and the fourth year of the whole grass roots experience. A big shout out to all my Superhero Spartans, Wonder Woman, Captain America, Batman, Scarlet Spiderman, Deadpool, The Flash, Pink Power Ranger, Wolverine, The Punisher, The Hulk and all of the other Spartan Volunteers who also made this event possible!

I wanted to mention a few of the volunteers because of all the effort they put into the event, but they humbly asked not be mentioned, because they want to continue to feel as if they are doing it for the right reasons and not for personal gain! What beautiful people!

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Citifield was filled with so many Superheroes making sure each and every Special Spartan ran and experienced a sense of camaraderie and accomplishment! I was ableto touch base with my Superhero friends and get some feedback from them on how it affected them and this is what they said:

“Special Spartans is always the highlight of my day at every race! It’s a basic human necessity to feel like you belong. Special Spartans has fulfilled that need in my own life and having this opportunity to share that with people that may struggle with that in theirs is something I look forward to every time I volunteer.” – Pink Power Ranger

13029433_10154886282263079_8259792584491621446_o“To be honest, I don’t have a great story or anything. I’ve done good. I’ve done bad things in life. But when a fellow superhero brought this cause to life, I thought this could be something I could do, to give back to others. Also, to be honest, I kinda feel like a nerd, so dressing up and giving back to others seemed like a way I could give back! I just want to make a difference so others won’t walk down the path that I have!” – Captain America

 

“I’ve always wanted to teach special education and help those in need and now that I’m a special education teacher, I found Special Spartans and can also help them conquer not only educational goals, but also their physical goals. I love seeing their faces light up when they accomplish an obstacle in their way, be it physical or mental.

It makes me smile when I can help them succeed” – Female Captain America

“I do it to see their faces light up!” – The Flash

“I got involved because I wanted to give back to a cause I hold so close to my heart. Itspoke to me because of my own experiences living on the autism spectrum. I felt if people knew about my experience and my ability to help those in need, it wouldinspire others to do the same and know they can do it as well, giving them hope for a better future.” – Robin

“I have a very positive outlook on life and want to give back and make a differencefor the good.” The Hulk

“For me the most rewarding part is seeing the genuine excitement when one of the athletes completes an obstacle they originally thought was impossible. Seeing their faces light up when they cross the finish line makes it all worthwhile!” – Scarlet Spiderman13575458_1181615795192914_1624693516_o

“I love doing Special Spartans, to see the look on their faces when they face their fears and overcome obstacles thrown in front of them. Special Spartans provides us the avenue for them to realize they are just as capable to do what we do! – Miss Marvel

 

“It was an amazing experience! I got to run with a father and son who is confined to his wheel chair. The father carried his son through the entire race! It’s hard to describe how I felt seeing that type of love… it brought tears to my eyes. On a lighter note,there were two beautiful volunteers who made my day and took a pic of us father, sonmyself and them! They also took a pic of Thor hitting me with his hammer!” – The Punisher

If you haven’t volunteered for Special Spartans, I strongly recommend it.

It is a life  changing experience.

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