Thousands of fans watched 6,500 athletes from 165 nations march into the Los Angeles Coliseum for the opening ceremonies of the Special Olympics World Games on 25 July.

The gathering was the largest for a single event in Los Angeles, surpassing the 1984 Olympic Games.

The athletes with intellectual disabilities paraded in before the lighting of the Special Olympics cauldron. US athlete Destiny Sanchez carried the torch over the final distance and then performed the ceremony to light the cauldron.

First Lady Michelle Obama also attended to help officially open the games. She said: "My husband and I, we are so proud of you, so incredibly proud of you, and we love you all from the bottom of our hearts."

She added the athletes, who are scheduled to participate in 25 different sports until 2 August, were an example to the millions of people watching the event on television.