Weyburn family honoured by Special Olympics

By Greg Nikkel

The Quist family of Weyburn were honoured with being presented with the Builders Award by Saskatchewan Special Olympics at their 50th anniversary celebrations held over the April 13th weekend in Saskatoon.

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Kevin Quist noted that nationally there were 300 awards presented for this milestone anniversary, with nine of them awarded in Saskatchewan.

Every member of the Quist family is involved with Special Olympics, and will continue to be, he said, and they felt honoured to be recognized for their efforts to support the organization.

Kevin has been a coach for Special Olympics and has served other roles for 16 years, while wife Lynn serves as the community manager for Special Olympics in Weyburn, along with coaching a bowling team and floor hockey. She has been involved with Special Olympics for about 15 years.

Their son Wil coaches floor hockey for the Special O team, and their youngest son Antonius is involved as an athlete in bowling, floor hockey and swimming.

Kevin noted that Lynn takes him to the indoor pool for swimming practice, and while she doesn’t coach him in that sport, a number of the lifeguards at the Leisure Centre are qualified coaches and are able to help him.

Their family business is operating the Home Hardware store in Weyburn, and that company is a national sponsor of Special Olympics. This also helps encourage the family’s involvement with the organization, noted Kevin.

The family was invited for a banquet and awards ceremony at the Delta Bessborough Hotel in Saskatoon. Members of the Saskatchewan Torch Run and from law enforcement agencies were present at the celebration as they are also heavily involved in supporting Special Olympics in Saskatchewan.

Kevin said being involved in Special Olympics is extremely rewarding at the personal level as they see how enjoyable the sports are for each of the athletes involved.

“There’s nothing quite like the feelings generated from these events,” said Kevin.

“For a lot of them, it’s a major social event of the week, depending how involved they are. They use their personal skills and make new friends through the program.”

Since receiving this award, Kevin noted many customers have congratulated them on it, and some expressed surprise because they weren’t aware how involved the family was in Special Olympics.