Skip to main content

Gulf & Main Magazine

Local Soccer Player Kevin Reynolds Inspires Special Olympians To Go For The Gold

Jul 12, 2022 03:18PM ● By Stephanie Hatley

Photo Courtesy of Pixabay

Every year five million participants in 172 countries go for the gold at the Special Olympics. This spring, Kevin Reynolds, president of the UCF club soccer team, decided to spend his volunteer hours coaching a few Special Olympians. What was just supposed to be a few hours of practices ended up becoming a connection beyond just friendship. Reynolds and his Special Olympian Cesar Aponte became like brothers.

Because of his history playing soccer, Reynolds meshed so well with Aponte and they became inseparable. They talked about life, college, and girls. Reynolds explains, "We really meshed with them really well and maybe we were a little bit better at coaching them just because we have more experience."

But the players are also pretty good. Reynolds remembers the highlight of the trip when he passed the ball to Gary and he scored. Reynolds shares, "It was something extremely special, so I’ll always remember it, and it was certainly one the proudest moments I’ve had in my career." They came home with the gold from the USA Special Olympic National Games. In fact, in August, Reynolds and Aponte will go to Minnesota to compete in the Unified All-Star Game.

Now Reynolds hopes to inspire other college athletes to get involved and volunteer.