Nancy Kerrigan (born October 13, 1969, in Stoneham, Massachusetts) is a twotime American Olympic Figure skating medalist and the 1993 American ladies champion.
Kerrigan began skating at age six. She grew up with brothers who played hockey, and often joined in herself. She describes herself as having been a "tomboy." She won her first figure skating medal at age nine. Kerrigan was coached by Evy and Mary Scotvold.
Her first placement at a major international competition was at the 1991 World Figure Skating Championships, when the American team scored a medal sweep in the ladies' event. Kerrigan received the bronze medal behind Kristi Yamaguchi and Tonya Harding. She received a bronze medal in the 1992 Winter Olympics (Yamaguchi won the gold), and the silver medal at the 1992 World Championships. The following season she became United States Champion and was leading the World Championship in Prague after the short program when a disastrous long program resulted in her tumbling to fifth in the standings and a win by Oksana Baiul.
January 6, 1994, attackEdit
Kerrigan gained considerable fame beyond the skating world when, on January 6, 1994, she was clubbed in the Knee by Shane Stant at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Detroit. Stant had been hired to assault her by Tonya Harding's ex-husband Jeff Gillooly and friend Shawn Eckardt. Following the attack, her screaming of the words "Why? Why?" became well-known and were even included in ESPN's Sports Century video, which chronicle the most important sports moments of the 20th century. Though Kerrigan was not able to take part in the Olympic trials due to injury, the USOC gave her a spot on the team with encouragement from Michelle Kwan, to whom the spot would have gone.
1994 Winter Olympics and Walt Disney World controversyEdit
A month after the attack, Kerrigan won the silver medal in the 1994 Lillehammer Winter Olympics at the Hamar Olympic Amphitheatre, finishing second to Oksana Baiul in a controversial ruling that gave Oksana the gold medal by 0.1 points. Immediately following her program, Kerrigan's public image took a nose-dive. While Kerrigan and bronze-medalist Chen Lu waited over 20 minutes for Olympic officials to find a copy of the Ukranian anthem, someone mistakenly told her the delay was because Oksana was putting on make-up. Kerrigan then made the statement on camera that it would be a waste because Oksana would just "come out here and wreck it." After Norwegian security had advised Kerrigan not to attend the closing ceremonies citing a lack of security for her, Kerrigan was criticized for leaving the Olympic venue to take part in a pre-arranged publicity Parade at Walt Disney World, her $2 million sponsor. It was there that she was caught on microphone during the parade saying "This is dumb. I hate it. This is the most corniest [sic] thing I have ever done." She later said her remarks had been taken out of context: she was commenting not on being in the parade, but on having to wear her silver medal in the parade. Others have wondered if Kerrigan landed higher profile endorsements than gold medalist Kristi Yamaguchi because of the publicized incident, or her better fitting an "all-American" image.
Life after retirement from active competitionEdit
Kerrigan retired from active competition after the Olympics, and is now married with three children, Matthew, Brian, and Nicole Elizabeth. She has appeared in a variety of Ice skating shows and played a small part in the 2007 movie Blades of Glory with Will Ferrell.
Kerrigan also appeared in the 2006 FOX television program Skating with Celebrities.
On October 27, 2008, Kerrigan was honored at Ice Theatre of New York's annual benefit gala.
Kerrigan was born to Brenda and Dan Kerrigan. She has two brothers: Michael and Mark. She graduated from Stoneham High School and attended Emmanuel College in Boston to study business.
Kerrigan created The Nancy Kerrigan Foundation to raise awareness and support for the vision impaired. Kerrigan's mother, Brenda, is legally blind.
Tabloids reported that she started dating her agent and future husband, Jerry Solomon, while he was still married to his second wife, though Solomon maintained that he had been separated from his second wife and they were headed to a divorce. Solomon was married twice before marrying Kerrigan. She and Solomon married on September 9, 1995. They have since had three children together: Matthew Eric, born December 1996; Brian, born April 14, 2005; and Nicole Elizabeth, born May 14, 2008. The family currently resides in Lynnfield, Massachusetts.
Competitive highlights Edit
|World Figure Skating Championships||3rd||2nd||5th|