Special Olympics Kansas Athlete to Play in National Golf Championship

MISSION, KS, August 29, 2023  – Special Olympics Kansas athlete Caleb DeMaio will play in the Special Olympics North America (SONA) Golf Championship in New Jersey this October. The SONA Golf Championship is a chance for Special Olympics athletes across the country to compete against each other. DeMaio will be playing in the top division.

“​​I am excited to represent my state and Special Olympics Kansas. I’m going to go have fun and do my best,” DeMaio said.

DeMaio also competed in the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games where he placed 3rd. This performance helped him qualify for the SONA Golf Championship. It will be the first year Special Olympics Kansas has an athlete participating in the championship.

CEO and President of Special Olympics Kansas John Lair explains how proud the organization is for his hard work.

“We are extremely excited for him and we look forward to him representing Special Olympics Kansas at this amazing event.” Lair said.

Outside of Special Olympics Kansas, his junior golf team previously won the Kansas Junior Amateur Golf Championship. He plays in a separate competitive golf league and was a member of his high school golf team at McPherson High School. DeMaio was the first person with an intellectual disability to be a part of a sports team at his high school.

He shares how Special Olympics Kansas helped him along his athletic journey and changed his life.

“It has made me stronger physically and helped me meet some cool people,” DeMaio said.

DeMaio has been an athlete with Special Olympics Kansas for over 10 years. He also plays basketball, track, and bowling, but DeMaio has always gravitated towards golf. 

“He has been playing golf since he could sit in the cart with me,” his father Joe DeMaio said.

Caleb DeMaio can be described as funny, outgoing, and very competitive. He is looking forward to the challenge New Jersey will bring. Good luck to Caleb at the SONA Golf Championship and with his future in golf.