NAMPA — Deny Burns loves his job as a student resource officer in Nampa, and after spending the past few weeks in Abu Dhabi for the Special Olympics World Games, the 'welcome home' letters from his students show they're excited he's back roaming the halls.
"I was selected as one of a hundred officers internationally to go and be part of the law enforcement torch run," said Burns.
His journey with the torch running and Special Olympics starts with volunteering at the winter games.
"I hung a medal around one of the athletes, and he gave me one of the biggest most genuine hugs I've ever had in my life and I was sold," said Burns.
Burns and the officers arrived two weeks ahead of the opening ceremony to travel around the area to bring awareness carrying the flame of hope.
"You can't go anywhere around Dubai or Abu Dhabi without knowing the games are there, and the people there are just wonderful," said Burns.
He also got to interact with the athletes, including the ones from right here in Idaho.
"I couldn't quit smiling. It was just amazing, and when Jon [Harmon] saw me there--just the wave, excited that I was there," said Burns.
He's still fundraising and preparing for the Summer Olympics, hoping to pass the torch on to more law enforcement officers looking to make a difference in the community.
"They are amazing, amazing athletes, and their sportsmanship and kindness towards each other--you won't see anything like it," said Burns.