Surrounded by their fellow “Guardians of the Flame” are Special Olympics athletes Tyler Couvillion of Hessmer, Louisiana (front row holding the torch) and Tara Bounds of Pineville, Louisiana (to the right holding the check). The sponsorship check is presented by Amber Saunders, Vice President of Marketing and Marie Warren, Director of Advertising at Paragon Casino Resort.
Marksville, LA. – (May 20, 2022) – The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana and Paragon Casino Resort are proud to sponsor the 2022 Law Enforcement Torch Run for the 2022 Louisiana Special Olympics.
On Friday, May 20, 2022, members of the Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office; Marksville Police Department; the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana Police Department; Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office; and Louisiana State Police – Troop E (Alexandria); joined forces to escort local Special Olympics participants, Tyler Couvillion and Tara Bounds, on the Avoyelles Parish leg of their run to the 2022 Special Olympics competition. The runners and escorts enjoyed a brief rest with refreshments at were welcomed with cheers and applause from Paragon Casino Resort Associates. Fresh fruit, cookies and cold beverages were enjoyed by all before the Olympians continued their journey.
Tyler Couvillion is the 16-year-old son of Jared and Roxanne Couvillion of Hessmer, LA. Tyler is wrapping up his 10th grade year as an Avoyelles Parish Virtual School student. Tyler has been involved in Special Olympics for three years and has earned a Gold medal in Bowling at the 2020 State Tournament in Baton Rouge. Since then, Tyler has earned a Bronze medal for Bowling at the regional event in Lafayette in December, placed second in the 25 meter dash, and first in the tennis ball throw in the Lafayette regional games in March. This has earned him two spots in the state games. Tyler is also attending the state Special Olympics Games in Covington in Athletics (track and field). Tyler loves being part of Special Olympics because everyone is so friendly, and it feels good to be a winner.
Tara Bounds, from Pineville, LA, is a 40-year Special Olympics athlete and has been competing for 32 years. She has participated in Area, State, USA, and World Games. She has won over 200 medals and numerous ribbons: 2005 Louisiana State Female Athlete of the year; 2006 USA game in Ames Iowa winning two gold and one silver; 2007 World Game in Shanghai China winning bronze 50-meter run and gold in softball 2018 USA games in Seattle Washington winning gold in 100-meter speed walking softball throw and silver in 50-meter speed walking
She has participated in athletics, softball, golf, horseshoes, Bocce and bowling. Tara has a very supportive family, and they won Louisiana Family of the year in 2008. Her Mom has been her coach. She loves her Special Olympics family and the officers in the Louisiana Law Enforcement Torch Run. She enjoys making new friends, traveling and yes, competing and winning.
The Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) is the largest public awareness vehicle and grass-roots fundraiser for Special Olympics. Known honorably as Guardians of the Flame, law enforcement members and Special Olympics athletes carry the “Flame of Hope” into the Opening Ceremony of local competitions, and into Special Olympics State, Provincial, National, Regional and World Games. Annually, almost 110,000 dedicated and compassionate law enforcement members carry the “Flame of Hope,” symbolizing courage and celebration of diversity uniting communities around the globe.