Home   Bury St Edmunds   News   Article

Subscribe Now

RAF Mildenhall hosts successful 40th Joan Mann Special Sports Day





A sports day dedicated to bringing people with special needs together was held at RAF Mildenhall on Friday.

The 40th Joan Mann Special Sports Day included bowling, basketball shoot, tennis ball bounce, frisbee toss, ring toss, tennis ball shuffle run, football kick, an obstacle course, American football throw, 50-yard run, 100-yard run and wheelchair slalom.

The event started in 1981 when Joan Mann, a Ministry of Defence employee who worked in the public affairs office at RAF Mildenhall, worked to bring together members of the military and local community with special needs.

Colonel Gene Jacobus, 100th Air Refueling Wing commander; Iris Weimer and Colonel Paul Townsend, 48th Fighter Wing vice-commander, at the Joan Mann Special Sports Day at RAF Mildenhall Picture: Airman 1st Class Alvaro Villagomez
Colonel Gene Jacobus, 100th Air Refueling Wing commander; Iris Weimer and Colonel Paul Townsend, 48th Fighter Wing vice-commander, at the Joan Mann Special Sports Day at RAF Mildenhall Picture: Airman 1st Class Alvaro Villagomez

Natalie Murphy, 100th Air Refueling Wing community relations advisor, said: “The Joan Mann Special Sports Day is such a heart-warming and important community relations event for the local community and RAF Mildenhall.

“It is one of the biggest events of the year and so much fun, not only for the athletes but the hundreds of volunteers who assist with the day.

“Many athletes look forward to this event all year and cannot wait for the games to begin. It is great that in its 40th year, Joan Mann Special Sports Day is still going strong.”

More than 200 volunteers from RAF Mildenhall, RAF Feltwell and RAF Lakenheath helped to make the event a success for more than 130 athletes, from 20 schools, who participated.

The day concluded with a medal ceremony.