Seasoned Special Olympics athlete, Ashley Aldrich, is proud to share her story on 2024 Final Leg Team

May 23, 2024

When Special Olympics MA athlete, Ashley Aldrich, received the news that she would be joining the Final Leg team, her reaction can be summed up in one word: proud. For Ashley, being chosen for the 2024 Final Leg was not only an honor but also a validation of her constant advocacy for Special Olympics Massachusetts. “I didn't know what to think! It makes me feel good about myself," she said. "It's about my positive attitude, and I think it'll be a great experience.”

The Final Leg isn't just about running from place to place throughout the state; it's about spreading awareness of the partnership between Special Olympics MA and Law Enforcement, and the upcoming Summer Games at Harvard University. Ashley understands the importance of informing others about Summer Games, and Special Olympics in general, so that they can choose to get involved. "We can show people what it's about," she explained.

Having been involved with Special Olympics since 2002, Ashley has participated in multiple sports, including basketball, volleyball, softball, and flag football. Back in 2019, Ashley was one of 12 athletes in the world  selected to play in the Special Olympics NBA Cares Unified Basketball Game during All-Star Weekend. And her most recent highlight was attending the 2022 USA Games in Orlando, Florida, where she competed with her team in softball… bringing home the Bronze medal!  

Ashley in the outfield at the 2022 USA Games in Orlando, Fl.

Ashley greatly appreciates the collaboration between Law Enforcement and Special Olympics MA, and recognizes the effort and dedication of officers who volunteer their time to support athletes like her. "It makes me feel great knowing that they want to be a part of it," she said. "I think it makes the athletes feel good, just knowing that officers get to come out and do the medals."

Ashley (far right) posing with some of her teammates at the 2022 USA Games after they received the bronze medal.

The Final Leg is a new experience for Ashley, and she's most excited about visiting different places, especially Fenway Park. Ashley knows that throughout Summer Games Week, she will be making speeches at various stops and telling people about her experience with Special Olympics. The biggest thing she wants people to take away is her positivity and hard work ethic.

“I want people to know I have a positive attitude and how long I've been involved for,” she said. “I want them to know what I do for Special Olympics and how I like being a good role model. I think it would make other people say, 'Okay, you know, this is something I could get involved in.'"  

Overall, Ashley can’t wait to embark on her Final Leg journey and add something new to her extensive Special Olympics resume.

"I'm just really excited to actually do this," she said. "I'm excited to see what it's about and just meet new people. So now I'm excited to have fun with them."

When Special Olympics MA athlete, Ashley Aldrich, received the news that she would be joining the Final Leg team, her reaction can be summed up in one word: proud. For Ashley, being chosen for the 2024 Final Leg was not only an honor but also a validation of her constant advocacy for Special Olympics Massachusetts. “I didn't know what to think! It makes me feel good about myself," she said. "It's about my positive attitude, and I think it'll be a great experience.”

The Final Leg isn't just about running from place to place throughout the state; it's about spreading awareness of the partnership between Special Olympics MA and Law Enforcement, and the upcoming Summer Games at Harvard University. Ashley understands the importance of informing others about Summer Games, and Special Olympics in general, so that they can choose to get involved. "We can show people what it's about," she explained.

Having been involved with Special Olympics since 2002, Ashley has participated in multiple sports, including basketball, volleyball, softball, and flag football. Back in 2019, Ashley was one of 12 athletes in the world  selected to play in the Special Olympics NBA Cares Unified Basketball Game during All-Star Weekend. And her most recent highlight was attending the 2022 USA Games in Orlando, Florida, where she competed with her team in softball… bringing home the Bronze medal!  

Ashley in the outfield at the 2022 USA Games in Orlando, Fl.

Ashley greatly appreciates the collaboration between Law Enforcement and Special Olympics MA, and recognizes the effort and dedication of officers who volunteer their time to support athletes like her. "It makes me feel great knowing that they want to be a part of it," she said. "I think it makes the athletes feel good, just knowing that officers get to come out and do the medals."

Ashley (far right) posing with some of her teammates at the 2022 USA Games after they received the bronze medal.

The Final Leg is a new experience for Ashley, and she's most excited about visiting different places, especially Fenway Park. Ashley knows that throughout Summer Games Week, she will be making speeches at various stops and telling people about her experience with Special Olympics. The biggest thing she wants people to take away is her positivity and hard work ethic.

“I want people to know I have a positive attitude and how long I've been involved for,” she said. “I want them to know what I do for Special Olympics and how I like being a good role model. I think it would make other people say, 'Okay, you know, this is something I could get involved in.'"  

Overall, Ashley can’t wait to embark on her Final Leg journey and add something new to her extensive Special Olympics resume.

"I'm just really excited to actually do this," she said. "I'm excited to see what it's about and just meet new people. So now I'm excited to have fun with them."

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