Yorkville teen ready to challenge in Special Olympics winter meet
By Judy Pochel For The Beacon-News December 11, 2012 2:00PM
Jeremy Kuehn, 17, of Yorkville has been selected to represent the United States at the 2012 Special Olympic World Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea, in January.
Updated: January 14, 2013 6:01AM
Jeremy Kuehn is on top of the world these days as he prepares to represent Illinois in the 2013 Special Olympic World Winter Games in January in PyeongChang, South Korea.
The Yorkville native attends Little Friends Bridge Vocational High School in Downers Grove and is a member of the Kendall County Special Olympics Comets, where he continues to perfect his skills in cross-country skiing.
“He is a natural athlete,” said Susan Benson, who works with Jeremy as his coach.
“He is a good kid, hard worker, always excited and rarely complains.”
Benson said she has known the teen for several years as she also served as his fourth-grade teacher.
Jeremy answered with an enthusiastic “yes” when asked about his upcoming trip.
“Getting up for practice and going as fast as you can,” are the qualities Jeremy said earned him a spot on the U.S. team. Only four other state residents were chosen for the national team.
After Jeremy won a medal in the Illinois Special Olympic Winter Games, his coach nominated him to represent the state on the world stage.
“We knew it was a long shot, but we were thrilled when we found out Jeremy was selected,” said his mom, Lori Kuehn.
“The Kendall County Special Olympics team is one of the best things he has ever been involved in,” she said. “He really enjoys doing his best.”
“He can go and be with other athletes, his coach is great and makes it fun; it’s great for socialization. It’s a once in a lifetime experience,” Lori Kuehn said.
To keep in shape, Jeremy worked out by skating and bicycling — and this month went to Lake Placid in New York where he and his teammates train for the world games.
After that it is off to South Korea for the world games with his brother, parents and grandfather — and the rest of the country — cheering him on.