As folks gather in Monroe Thursday to watch olympian Javianne Oliver begin her quest for the Gold in the Women’s 100 m at the Tokyo Olympics, there are three young local Junior Olympians who will be heading to Houston for their place on the national athletic stage.
“We have three youth athletes that will be taking a big stage as well. Kaelyn Ansley, Lewis Hendrix, and Skylar Blythers will all be competing in the 55th AAU National Junior Olympics starting July 31, 2021, in Houston, Texas,” said Coach BreAnn Robinson, founder of the Hurricane Elites. “These young athletes have been competing since January and made it their goal to make it to the Olympics and they did just that!! Lewis is the AAU Regional Champion in the 11U Boys division in the discus!! Kaelyn took second place in the AAU Regionals in the 400M running a time of 1:03.22, and Skylar brought home third at AAU Regionals 8U division in shot put with a throw of 14ft.”
The AAU was founded in 1888 to establish standards and uniformity in amateur sports and, during the early years, the AAU served as a leader in international sport representing the U.S. in the international sports federations. The AAU worked closely with the Olympic movement to prepare athletes for the Oluympic Games and following the Amateur Sports Act of 1978, it has focused its efforts on providing sports probrams for all participants at all ages.
Robinson said Kaelyn will compete in the 400m, 100M, and 200m, Skylar will compete in shot put, and Lewis will compete in discus, shot put, and long jump.
“Skylar and Lewis went on to punch their ticket by securing first place in their events of shot put (18ft 11 inches) and discus (53ft 1 inch) at the Georgia Games to compete at the 2022 National State Games of America in Des Moines, Iowa,” Robinson said, adding “Lewis Hendrix has autism and have been doing well because AAU GA division has been doing everything they can to be inclusive and understand his unique needs. Without their commitment to inclusion this wouldn’t have been possible.”
All athletes run for Hurricane Elites, coached by Robinson and Khadiyja Kemp-Masters, both former Monroe Area High School track athletes and alumnus. Robinson started Hurricane Elites in 2019, and that same year she took two athletes to the National Junior Olympics stage.
Robinson said Hurricane Elites is sponsors by Winged Foot & Running, Publix Supermarket Charities, and Auesome Achievers LLC, another business founded by Robinson. The young athletes train at Hurricane Field in Monroe.
“They are also supporters of Hurricane Elites with allowing us unlimited access to the track,” she said.
Auesome Achievers, “educates, empowers and enlightens families about IEPs, 504 Plans, special education law and all other educational and family support.
“We provide services for all special needs families, while specializing in Autism, ADHD and Dyslexia,” Auesome Achievers notes on website. Its mission statement is “to support families in their distance learning and homeschooling journey by providing academically rigorous curriculum, engaging hands-on lessons, and a safe learning environment in which to build lasting friendships and support.” It is completely inclusive with a “sole purpose to provide educational services that promotes awareness, acceptance, and advocacy through the aide of the parents that will allow all children, even those with special needs, to experience learning success, become life-long learners, and contributing members of our community.”
So as our eyes turn to our Olympian in Tokyo, remember to also keep in your hearts our young up-and-coming future Olympians who will be competing in Houston.