Alumnus profile: Danny Williamson


Owen Hardy

Danny Williamson receiving a gold medal for shot put at the Special Olympics

OWEN HARDY, Staff Writer

If you live in Gloucester, chances are you know Danny Williamson. Whether you’ve seen him at GHS sports games, viewed his videos on Facebook, or have come across pictures of him with his medals, it’s clear that Williamson is a star. 

Williamson has lived in Gloucester his whole life. He graduated from Gloucester High School in 2008 but never went too far away. He is now 31 years old, but you can still find him at the high school almost every day of the week. 

Williamson is very involved with Gloucester High School athletics, helping out wherever he can throughout the year. He is the team manager of the soccer, football, and basketball teams and also coaches and trains as a part of the track team. 

In addition to his contributions to GHS athletics, Williamson is also well-known for his achievements as a Special Olympian. 

In his time with Special Olympics, he has won over one hundred medals, including the gold medal in the shot put at the Special Olympics USA Summer Games in New Jersey. He was also the first athlete from Massachusetts to carry the torch at the Special Olympics USA Summer Games which took place in Seattle, Washington three years ago. 

On top of all this, in the summer of 2019, Williamson was inducted into the Special Olympics Massachusetts Hall of Fame at age 29. Despite this induction, he is showing no sign of slowing down and plans to keep going for a long while. 

“I hope to keep competing at the best of my capability and to continue spreading awareness about Special Olympics.”

“Special Olympics has helped me express myself by giving me the confidence to speak in front of larger crowds. Also I have been able to show people what I am capable of as an athlete.”

Williamson plays soccer, basketball, bowling, track & field, and bocce for Cape Ann Special Olympics. He loves representing Gloucester and enjoys giving back to the community. 

“The community of Gloucester has meant the world to me,” Williamson said. “Everyone that I have met in Gloucester has always been there to help me out with anything that I have needed and I would try to do the same in return. To me Gloucester is basically one big family.”

The pandemic has presented a challenge for Cape Ann Special Olympics, as it forced athletes to go about 6 months without full competition. The program started back up in the fall however, following many of the same protocols as local high school sports teams. 

“Since the pandemic started it definitely has been difficult, but I have not let it fully affect my life,” he said. “I have actually been training even harder than I was before the pandemic started, since I don’t want to risk losing any of the progress that I have gained throughout the years.”

“Throughout the last year it has been a little difficult since I haven’t been able to compete as much as I would like to, but I have been making the most out of it. At every single practice that I have had with the Special Olympics teams, I have continued to work hard so that once we are able to compete in tournaments again, I will be ready.”

Williamson has proven himself as a talented athlete and dedicated coach, heavily invested in Gloucester High School and Cape Ann Special Olympics. He has no plans to stop any time soon, and looks forward to furthering his achievements and helping GHS athletics to thrive for years to come.