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Special Olympics athlete Tatia Leyden excels as both athlete and mentor

Special Olympics athlete Tatia Leyden excels as both athlete and mentor

Clad from head to toe in her favorite team’s bright red gear, Tatia Leyden was dressed as a St. Louis Cardinals superfan when she competed in a bowling event Saturday and passed out candy to trick-or treaters Sunday.

This was Leyden’s sixth year in a row dressed as the Cardinals’ biggest fan and her 20th season participating in the Columbia Parks and Recreation Adapted Sports/Special Olympics program.

Tatia Leyden shows off her some of her 160 Special Olympic medals

Tatia Leyden shows off her some of her 160 Special Olympic medals that she has won over the past 20 years Sunday at her house in Columbia. “I was most proud of when my team won state softball in Jeff City,” Leyden said.

Tatia Leyden grabs her Adam Wainwright bobblehead

Tatia Leyden grabs her Adam Wainwright bobblehead Sunday at her house in Columbia. “This is my ultimate favorite,” Leyden said. “Because he (Wainright) is coming back.”

Bowlers prepare to start a game at the annual Columbia adapted sports bowling Halloween event

Bowlers prepare to start a game at the annual Columbia adapted sports bowling Halloween event Saturday at AMF Town & Country Lanes in Columbia. Tatia Leyden has been a member of the Columbia Parks and Recreation Adapted Sports and Special Olympics program for 20 years.

Tatia Leyden watches her bowl roll down the lane in the Halloween bowling match

Tatia Leyden watches her bowl roll down the lane in the Halloween bowling match Saturday at AMF Town & Country Lanes in Columbia. Leyden has dressed up as a St. Louis Cardinals baseball player for the past six years because of her love for the team. “Tatia is awesome and definitely a super fan,” Joan Leyden said.

Tatia Leyden reacts to the score in the final minutes of her bowling match

Tatia Leyden reacts to the score in the final minutes of her bowling match on Saturday, at AMF Town & Country Lanes in Columbia.

Jannel Ronneburg, left, waits for a ball as Tatia Leyden throws her bowling ball

Jannel Ronneburg, left, waits for a ball as Tatia Leyden throws her bowling ball down the lane Saturday at AMF Town & Country Lanes in Columbia. The Halloween event was held for members of the Columbia Parks and Recreation Adapted Sports and Special Olympics program.

  • Assistant City Editor fall 2022 Reach me at ecm6zb@mail.missouri.edu, or in the newsroom at (573) 882 5720

  • Assistant city editor, fall 2021. Former state government reporter, second-year graduate student studying public policy journalism. You can reach me at mossolinski@mail.missouri.edu, or in the newsroom at 882-5720.

  • Photo Editor, Fall 2021 Grad Student Reach me at tagz8@umsystem.edu, or in the newsroom at 882-5700

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