The Whitfield County Special Olympics began under bright, sunny skies on Friday morning with some help from area law enforcement officers.
Officers from the Dalton Police Department's Honor Guard presented the colors for the singing of "The Star Spangled Banner" to kick things off. Then, Dalton Police officers joined some of their counterparts from the Whitfield County Sheriff's Office for the Special Olympics Torch Relay with selected athletes. The athletes made their way around the track at Northwest Whitfield High School accompanied by officers, before handing the torch off to Dalton Police Chief Jason Parker, who lit the torch cauldron. Mayor David Pennington of Dalton gave the official word to begin competition, "let the games begin!"
On May 10th, officers from the DPD and WCSO will participate in the Law Enforcement Torch Run to raise money in support of the Special Olympics. If you'd like to buy Law Enforcement Torch Run merchandise, click here for more information. Or, if you'd just like to make a donation to the Dalton Police Department's fundraising effort, click here.
Below: Scenes from the start of the Whitfield County Special Olympics (click images to see a larger version)