By Rosie Moore

I always hold my breath when I see those Olympic ice skaters do their intricate steps on ice. Especially did I hold my breath in 1984, when Scott Hamilton won the gold medal.

Scott was born on August 29, 1955 in Toledo, Ohio but was adopted by college instructors Dorothy and Ernie Hamilton from Bowling Green. The young Hamilton suffered from Shwachman-Diamond Syndrome, a rare disorder characterized by limited nutrient absorption and a smaller stature. Though he faced significant health challenges, he thrived once he took to the ice, playing hockey, but choose to focus on figure skating, entering competitions by the time he was eleven. He relocated to Illinois to take up training but stopped in the mid-’70s due to high financial costs. He resumed his focus of the sport after his mother’s death in 1977 and received sponsorship.

In 1997 he was diagnosed with testicular cancer from which he recovered. Years later he also faced a brain tumor diagnosis for which he underwent surgery in 2010 and recovered again. He started the Scott Hamilton CARES Initiative with emphasis on funding cancer research, sharing on-line information on chemotherapy and providing one-on-one mentorship for patients.

He quoted these remarks: “The year before the 1984 Olympics was my most intensive year of training. I thought about the Olympics daily and I visualized them daily. I was not going to wait till the last minute to train. Instead, I treated every practice like a competition.”

He became known for his athletic, petite frame, sleek skating outfits, and his crowd-pleasing backflips.  Despite his adversities he is champion on ice and a champion in life. He is married to his wife, Traci, and they have two children.

A word about Amy Grant: Amy Lee Grant is an American singer, songwriter, musician, author, media personality, and actress. Best known for performing Christian music, she has been referred to as “Queen of Christian Pop.”

Both of these fabulous figures were in Knoxville recently giving a fabulous show of their enormous talents. I was unable to go but it can be seen on the Internet.

Thought for the day: there is only one success, to be able to live your life in your own way.   Christopher Morley

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