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Trip to Jr. Olympics Focus of Fencer's Fundraising Campaign

The Union teenager hopes to offset costs for the February competition in Portland, OR.

Fifteen-year-old Omari Smoak of Union has already qualified to fence in the USA Junior Olympic Fencing Championships in Portland, OR next month.
Fifteen-year-old Omari Smoak of Union has already qualified to fence in the USA Junior Olympic Fencing Championships in Portland, OR next month.
Fifteen-year-old Omari Smoak of Union has already qualified to fence in the USA Junior Olympic Fencing Championships in Portland, OR next month and now he's making one last push to raise money online to offset the cost of the trip.

Smoak's mom, Denise Odom, created a campaign on GoFundMe.com to help raise $4,000 to cover travel expenses as well as fencing equipment, lodging, food, competition registration fees and other incidentals. The campaign is already more than halfway towards its goal with a little more than three weeks to go to the competition over Valentine's Day weekend.

The fencer, who started the sport when he was 9 years old, is a sophomore at St. Benedicts Preparatory School in Newark, his mom told Patch in an email.

"He has been on the team (called Gray Bees) for 3 years and loves the school's rigorous fencing program," she added.

Smoak lives in Union with his parents and dog, Bolo.

To read more about the campaign, click here.

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