By Terrionna Brockman
Rebecca English is a Special Olympics Southern California (SOSC) bowling athlete from Lake Elsinore, California. She has been a bowler for over 20 years and she will finally get a chance to showcase her skills at USA Games in Orlando, Florida. It is her first time competing at the Games and she is beyond excited!
Rebecca comes from a family of bowlers. Both her mother and brother share an appreciation for the sport. “She was about seven or eight and my son was five. Our main goal was to try and keep my son occupied, but Becca started loving the sport,” her mother shares. Rebecca was bowling in the 7-9 age group and her mother overheard a conversation between two young girls. “I heard them starting to make fun of her. One little girl said ‘she’s really good though, let’s keep her’ and one little girl said ‘she’s kind of weird though’.” Rebecca’s mother immediately withdrew her from the league, which led their family to Special Olympics. “We enrolled her in there [Special Olympics] and she’s never left!” Rebecca and her family immediately felt accepted and as her mother said, “She shined after that!” Her brother shares the same sentiments about his sister’s bowling skills stating that “She beat me every time. She’s pretty good!”
When asked what it means to represent Southern California at the Games, Rebecca says, “I’m proud! Everyone is happy and excited.” She also shared that her favorite part about being a SOSC athlete is getting to meet new people and making new friends, which she will get the opportunity to do at the Games. “I’m making everyone happy and having fun,” she exclaims.
Rebecca keeps a positive attitude and a smile no matter what. Her advice to those wanting to try their hand at bowling… “Just grab a ball and go!”