A group of students at Mustang High School serve as partners to the athletes in the Special Olympics. And what they did for Tanner Flowers Thursday was totally selfless.
It was a homecoming fit for the most deserving group of people; Mustang Police shut down intersections to make way for the Special Olympians to return from Stillwater.
Tanner Flowers competed in the bocce ball games with his partner Halle Andrews, a junior at Mustang High. But they came in fourth place, it wasn't enough to get a medal.
“Tanner and I had some really great competition and we just missed it by a few points,” Andrews said.
It was devastating for Tanner and for his parents, Linda and Jerry Flowers.
“Tanner had prayed all day long, just let me win that medal and I mean it was so emotional when they got fourth place and his heart was just broken and tears started to well up in his eyes,” Jerry said.
But Perry Edwards, another student partner who won third place and got the bronze medal stepped in.
“I just had to do something and I just wanted to see him smile,” he said.
Edwards told Tanner the referee’s had made a mistake and he did indeed win third place.
“And when he got that third place, Halle and Perry placed that medal around his neck and then hugged him and told him what he had just achieved and the smile on his face told the tale of what Special Olympics is all about,” Jerry explained.
To Tanner and many other competitors this is what they live for, so winning a Special Olympics medal is more than just winning a medal. It's winning a dream.
“To see your child who has struggled all his life to be accepted and to be part of a group like this, it’s just priceless,” Linda told News 9.
Fifty-nine Olympians competed from the Mustang area this past week, taking home dozens of medals.