Brooklyn Park Special Olympic Athlete Returns Home with Gold
Weather delays and travel problems couldn’t dampen Tiffany Carey’s smile as she hugged her twin sister, Christine, at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport on Wednesday.
Carey had just returned from Germany, where she’d represented Team USA at the Special Olympics World Games.
“Just fulfilled my dream,” Carey said at her Brooklyn Park home on Thursday. “Thirty-two years I’ve wanted to go to a World Games.”
The 49-year-old gymnast earned a gold medal in the all-around competition.
“My dream was to get one gold, and take it home,” she said.
Carey did more than that. She also earned one silver and two bronze medals.
Brooklyn Park Special Olympic Athlete’s ‘Phenomenal’ World Games
The trip was the culmination of years of work representing Minnesota at the national level and waiting for the call to go to the World Games, which are every four years.
“My dream was to walk into a world opening ceremonies, just to see everything around,” she said. “It was phenomenal.”
Her mother, Mary, said Tiffany had worked so hard to make it to the World Games.
“Every year, she’d wait. Every four years, she’d think ‘Maybe this time.'” said Mary. “She held her head up high. She worked hard, she never quit. She never gave up on her dream.”
Tiffany and her parents got to travel around Germany to see different tourist attractions and got to meet families from all over the world.
“I met people from Lithuania, Canada, Germany, Slovakia. It was so much fun,” said Tiffany Carey.
“I went and peeked in on some judo and some table tennis and some basketball and some weightlifting. Everybody gives it their all,” said Mary. “There’s no smile like an athlete playing their game.”
The USA gymnastics team all swapped phone numbers to stay in touch and Carey said she’s already setting her sights on representing her country at the next World Games–in Minnesota in 2026.