Colin Farrell joins Team Ireland parade at 2015 Special Olympics opening ceremony
Hollywood A-lister Colin Farrell has spoken of his pride at being able to accompany Team Ireland for the official parade of athletes at the Opening Ceremony of the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles.
Farrell, who has been involved with Special Olympics since the 2003 World Games in his native Dublin, joined Irish Olympic silver medallist John Treacy and pregnant Claudine Keane — wife of Ireland’s leading goal-scorer Robbie — in leading the Irish delegation at the ceremony.
There are 88 Team Ireland athletes taking part, including 12 from Ulster.
True Detective star Farrell, who now lives in Los Angeles, said he was ‘honoured’ to be involved.
“I’m so excited to once more bear witness to the spirit of competition amid the solidarity that the 2015 World Summer Games will showcase,” he said.
“So many athletes from all over the world coming together and the Irish team front and centre. Meeting all of the athletes and walking out among the Irish team is such a great honour. Let’s go Ireland! Let’s go world!”
Michelle Obama opened of the games on Saturday night at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, telling 6,500 athletes from 165 countries that she and her husband are proud of them.
The First Lady told the athletes: “My husband and I, we are so proud of you, so incredibly proud of you, and we love you all from the bottom of our hearts.”
The athletes will participate in 25 sports over nine days, ranging from weightlifting to the triathlon.
President Barack Obama earlier greeted the athletes by video from Kenya where is on an Africa tour.