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Amarillo coach receives a statewide honor

Amarillo, Texas - An area coach receives a statewide honor.

J'Nette Thorne received the Special Olympics Texas statewide coach of the year award this week in Amarillo.

I asked one of her athletes why he thinks she deserves this award, and he summed it up in one sentence.

Tommy Jerman says, "my coach is the greatest coach... Ever."

J'Nette Thorne has been a Special Olympics coach for nearly 16 years.

She tells us winning the award means a lot to her because other coaches in Texas were actually the ones who made the final decision.

But what's most important to her, is her olympians.

Coach J'Nette Thorne says, "it means that I've made a difference in the individuals that I coach or come in contact with. So I'm extremely proud and happy that they chose me. It just means that I've made an impact on people's lives."

To all around athlete Tommy Jerman, Coach Thorne has done something for him no one else has ever been able to do.

Jerman says, "she's helped me in a way where I struggle in sports, and she sits down and talks to me. She tells me to calm down and when I calm down I play a whole lot better than I played before."

Jerman believes being able to be a part of the special Olympics is a great honor for him, and having a coach like Thorne is just icing on the cake.

Jerman says, "what would you say to people who maybe wanted to take part in the Special Olympics?.. It's a great atmosphere. It's a great thing for special need kids to have fun... To go out there and just win. Even if you don't win, you're a winner. You're an automatic winner. You'll enjoy the people around you... And just have fun with it."

He tells us Coach Thorne not only helps him and the other olympians be the best athletes they can be, but more importantly, she's a friend.

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