Honorary ESPY given to Special Olympic athlete battling cancer in the hospital

AURORA -- It wasn’t under a spotlight on a big stage, but Colorado Special Olympian Jason Horton has his honorary ESPY. 

Members of the Colorado Rapids soccer team delivered it to him Thursday in the hospital room where he is recovering after having a cancer tumor removed earlier this week.

“Dear Mr. Horton, the ESPY Awards are proud to present you with a 2017 Honorary ESPY in recognition of your talent, dedication and enthusiasm for athletics,” read the note included with the trophy.

Wednesday night the ESPYs honored the legacy of Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver with the Arthur Ashe Courage award. As part of that celebration, Horton and 24 other Special Olympic athletes across the nation were given honorary awards.

“Jason has been with our Special Olympics team for many years and you develop relationships,” said midfielder Dillon Powers, one of three players on hand to deliver the award.

Jason has been a Special Olympics Colorado Athlete for four years and competes in flag football and softball in addition to soccer.

Jason has fought cancer three different times before starting this latest battle. In those previous battles, he’s lost sight in one of his eyes, his leg and is now deaf. 

“He’s battled for his life on several occasions and to overcome that and still be able to be on the team and win an ESPY -- it really is cool to see and puts things in perspective for us,” Powers said.

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