Noah Dellas, a 17-year-old student in the Cape May County Technical School District won a gold medal in the triathlon — a first-time event at the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles on July 26, 2015.
Lisa Rumer, a local triathlete and program supervisor at the Ocean City Aquatics and Fitness Center, helped lobby to add the sport to the Special Olympics, and she brings home a world title as coach of the first USA team.
Noah was first out of the water and never looked back in the event, which was held at Alamitos Beach in Long Beach, Calif. The triathlon included a half-mile swim, a 12-mile bike ride and a 5-kilometer (3.1 miles) run.
After the event, Rumer said Dellas, a strong swimmer, had planned to lead from the start. She said he was extremely excited about the victory, and handled multiple interviews with poise.
More than 7,000 athletes and 3,000 coaches from 170 countries competed in the World Games. The triathlon is just one of 25 sports in the nine-day competition.
Dellas, a student in the Cape May County Technical School said that he hopes to attend Rutgers University, where he wants to study architecture and agriculture, as well as join the swim team.
Dellas remained in Los Angeles through the conclusion of the Games. The triathletes were invited to compete in individual events included in the triathlon and Dellas was to compete in a one-mile open-water swim.
One of the highlights of the Games for him, Rumer said, was meeting his idol, Michael Phelps.
Pictured: (l to r) Assemblyman Samuel Fiocchi, Noah Dellas and Freeholder Director Gerald M. Thornton, August 19, 2015