On Saturday, August 1, 2015, members of our Interscholastic Unified Sports soccer team played against a New Jersey team of players from Rowan University’s Special Olympics College unified group at PPL Park prior to the Philadelphia Union game vs. New York Red Bulls. Students from Martin Luther King and Chester High Schools received Union jerseys with their last name on the back, shorts and socks.
Throughout the game, some Philadelphia Union members came to wish our team luck including midfielder Jimmy McLaughlin, forward Andrew Wenger, defender Raymond Lee, goalkeeper John McCarthy, and manager Jim Curtin. With high fives all around, our team was ready to play! Our Unified Philadelphia Union team looked great on the field. In a very exciting on field experience, our players walked away victorious 4-2 over New Jersey.
After the Exchange Game, our Philadelphia athletes and partners were able to enjoy the Philadelphia Union vs. New York Red Bulls game. During halftime, both Unified teams were brought on the field one last time to be awarded their medals. Sons of Ben (Philadelphia Union’s fan club) gave both Unified Teams roaring applause and support as the athletes and partners received their awards. Following the Union/Red Bulls game, both exchange teams and their families were invited to a reception before heading home.
Philadelphia Union’s Hometown Hero
Prior to the kickoff of the highly anticipated Philadelphia Union vs. New York Red Bulls match at PPL Park, Myra Ausberry was awarded the Hometown Hero Award. The Hometown Hero Award recognizes those men and women who have made a difference in the lives of others. These heroes are ordinary people that have made an extraordinary impact through their service, dedication, knowledge and spirit. The Philadelphia Union looks to salute those heroes who have inspired people to improve the lives of their cities, towns, communities and neighbors. Traditional values of teamwork, effort, accountability, trust and selflessness are the cornerstones of Philadelphia Union’s Hometown Heroes.
Myra Ausberry has volunteered countless hours as a coach to athletes in some of the most under served areas of the city for Special Olympics Pennsylvania’s Philadelphia program. She ensures that those she engages with know about the opportunities available through Special Olympics, and provides resources and personal support to them wherever needed. The energy that Myra brings to her role as a coach is contagious. It is easy to see why the athletes and families enjoy being around her.
Myra’s support and commitment to her sports teams every season has not gone unnoticed. She has personally helped athletes compete on both the local and national level. In addition, her passion for Special Olympics goes beyond the seven sports she is certified to coach within the community program. She is also an active supporter of the Unified Sports program and is particularly known for her current coaching position with the Martin Luther King High School Unified Soccer Team.
Congratulations, Myra! We are so lucky to have such a committed volunteer!