Melanie Heroux

District:Eastern Ontario
Community:Ottawa
Sport:Swimming
Team:Orleans Rip Tides
What other sports do you participate in?Swimming, Bowling and Volleyball
Will these be your first Provincial Games?No
What other Games have you competed in?The first time I ever competed at a Special Olympics Provincial Games, was back in 2012, in Kingston, Ontario, again in Swimming, where I brought home 1 Bronze, 1 Silver, and 4 GOLD MEDALS, which then led me to compete at the 2014 National Games in Vancouver, B.C., and for me, this was particularly special as whether or not I had qualified for the Nationals, my family and I were already headed out to B.C., to visit my grandparents who were both celebrating their 90TH BIRTHDAY AT THE TIME, so they got to see me bring home 5 Bronze Medals during their birthday celebrations. And more recently, I was selected to go compete at the Special Olympics Bowling Provincials, taking part in Oshawa, Ontario, where I this time brought home 1 TEAM GOLD AND 1 INDIVIDUAL SILVER. I am once again very honored to have the pleasure of competing at the Provincials again for Swimming in Waterloo, and I look forward to being the best I can be!!!
Best Special Olympics Memory:Hmmmmm……… kind of hard to pick my most memorable sports accomplishment with Special Olympics as there are soooooo many to choose from hahahahaha, but I would say maybe when I attended a conference for work a while back, I was part of a panel of people with special needs, so I got to share my story with some of the folks who were there, and after the question period this gentlemen comes to me, and says in French (yes I speak both French and English) “so you’re the Special Olympics Athlete Ambassador? Well where have you been hiding all this time?? My name’s Gerry Mulligan, and I’m the Community Coordinator for the Gatineau Chapter of Special Olympics, I’ve been looking everywhere for you. Would you be willing to help me with the continuing development of the Gatineau Chapter of Special Olympics?” So yes I’m quite active with Special Olympics both on the Ontario side and the Quebec side, and truly appreciate supporting the growth of local athletes.
Hobbies and Activities:I absolutely just love to watch airplanes at the airport, and every time I go visit my dad in Montreal (he’s just minutes away from the airport), we always make sure to dedicate some time to go watch airplanes either at the roundabout (oh god how that spot needs to be deemed National Tourist Attraction), or at the little airport-park nearby. I also have a very big passion for First Responders and Emergency vehicles, and am quite fascinated by all the equipment in an ambulance and fire truck. I also enjoy watching hockey, my favorite team are the Montreal Canadiens, and I have a personal trainer who’s a very big Toronto fan, so we just ABSOLUTELY LOVE TEASING EACH OTHER ABOUT HOCKEY.
Message to Sponsors:As athlete ambassador, I truly think it’s very important to take the time and thank Sponsors who give generously to causes like ours, because Special Olympics really has a huge impact on people with intellectual disabilities, like myself, as it allows us to have a voice to be heard in the community, and we’re also voices for those who may not have the ability to stand up for themselves. Over the years, Special Olympics has helped me grow my levels of self-esteem and confidence to levels otherwise impossible to reach, and I would not have grown into the person/woman I have grown into today, without their help. To ALL SPONSORS  OUT THERE, you can’t go wrong by choosing to support Special Olympics Athletes, as you’re basically helping to grow even more awareness about Special Olympics and intellectual disabilities, and you’re helping people get equal chances to play and participate on an equal playing field, and with support like yours, you’re giving a chance to folks to pursue their dreams and reach their goals, whether it be to their first Provincials, Nationals, or World’s. You’re allowing us to just be us, and do what we do best to the best of our abilities. Reaching our goals wouldn’t happen if we wouldn’t have all the great support from all the great supporters out there. Thank you very much for supporting a truly wonderful cause!   Your support does really mean a lot!