2017 ESPYs: Michelle Obama honors late Eunice Kennedy Shriver

PHOTO: Michelle Obama delivers opening remarks during an event at the White House Nov. 14, 2016 in Washington. Eunice Kennedy Shriver arrives for the Faces Of Sport party on April 29, 2004 in Beverly Hills, Calif.PlayGetty Images
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One of the most emotional moments at the 2017 ESPYs was when former first lady Michelle Obama honored the late Eunice Kennedy Shriver with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award.

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Shriver founded the Special Olympics in 1968 and the organization now stands as the world's largest sports organization for millions of children and adults living with intellectual disabilities in more than 100 countries.

Obama came out to a standing ovation and then said, "I am here tonight to honor a remarkable woman."

PHOTO: Michelle Obama speaks onstage at The 2017 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater, July 12, 2017, in Los Angeles. Kevin Winter/Getty Images
Michelle Obama speaks onstage at The 2017 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater, July 12, 2017, in Los Angeles.

"Through her passionate service, she made the world more welcoming and fair," she said. "Alongside heroes like Jackie Robinson ... Muhammad Ali and Arthur Ashe, there's Eunice Kennedy Shriver."

A heartfelt video then played, featuring children sharing their first-person stories of how their intellectual disabilities negatively affected their lives. Children spoke about "getting shoved in lockers" at school, just because they were different.

Shriver, who died in 2009, was also mother to Maria Shriver and sister of the late President John F. Kennedy. She was inspired to start the Special Olympics because her sister Rosemary was born with intellectual disabilities.

The video explained how at the time when she began her crusade for acceptance, those with intellectual disabilities were institutionalized and marginalized. First, she began Camp Shriver in 1960 as a place for all types of children to compete, then as it grew, she dreamed of something bigger -- the Special Olympics.

Shriver's son Timothy, who now serves as chair for the organization, accepted the award on his mother's behalf and was joined by a handful of Special Olympians.

PHOTO: Timothy Shriver addresses former first lady Michelle Obama, fifth from left, and Special Olympic athletes as he accepts the Arthur Ashe Courage Award on behalf of his late mother at the Microsoft Theater, July 12, 2017, in Los Angeles. Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
Timothy Shriver addresses former first lady Michelle Obama, fifth from left, and Special Olympic athletes as he accepts the Arthur Ashe Courage Award on behalf of his late mother at the Microsoft Theater, July 12, 2017, in Los Angeles.

"Our mother would have loved you," he told Obama. "She would have been so honored that you are here for her tonight, as we all are."

He then thanked the "leader of our family."

"You can just imagine Arthur Ashe and Eunice Shriver," he said. "Both committed to inclusion ... the two of them, what an extraordinary team in heaven inspiring us still."

He closed by saying that Special Olympians "deserve the same glory as any other athlete competing in this world!"

"This movement she created over 50 years is not done yet," he said. "Remove the blinders, remove the fear ... see the person you are afraid of. See each other."