“I started playing basketball and opportunities just opened up for me.”

When he was a teenager, José Rodriguez was kicked out of public school.

He was diagnosed with a learning disability and sent to a school for students with special needs.

This qualified him to participate in the New Jersey Special Olympics–any child or adult with an intellectual disability can take part.

At StoryCorps, José told his former coach Charles Zelinsky what his life was like before he found the games.

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Recorded in

José is now a Special Olympics basketball coach–and will be coaching during the 2012 New Jersey Summer Games.

Recorded in Trenton, New Jersey
Produced by Jasmyn Belcher
Facilitated by Virginia Lora
Read the Transcript
Click here for the transcript.
In partnership with
Special Olympics New Jersey