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Frank Carroll, Figure Skating Coach of Michelle Kwan and Others, Dead at 85

Legendary figure skater and coach Frank Carroll has died. He was 85.

The U.S. Figure Skating Association confirmed Carroll’s death to PEOPLE and in a statement posted on X (formerly Twitter) on Sunday, June 9.

“U.S. Figure Skating mourns the loss of coaching legend Frank Carroll,” the statement began. “A member of the World and U.S. Figure Skating Halls of Fame, Frank was instrumental in the careers of numerous Olympic and World champions and many future Hall of Famers.”

Born in 1938 in Worcester, Massachusetts, Carroll was first introduced to figure skating by his father. He went on to win three medals on the national level before transitioning into coaching the sport in the 1960s, according to NBC Sports.

Carroll and Kwan in 2001.

Doug Pensinger/ALLSPORT

Throughout his career, he coached three world champions in the women’s and men’s singles division of the sport: Linda Fratianne, Michelle Kwan and Evan Lysacek.

All of those skaters went on to win Olympic medals, with Lysacek, 39, being his only pupil to take home a gold medal.

“This is just frosting on the cake for me,” Carroll said after Lysacek became an Olympic champion in the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada, per NBC Sports. “It’s not something I coveted after a while. It was something I thought maybe would never happen.”

Fratianne earned the silver medal in the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, New York, in a competition that Carroll is on record as saying was rigged in favor of an East German competitor, per NBC Sports.

Frank Carroll (left) and Evan Lysacek in 2010.

Christopher Polk/Getty 

Carroll’s most well-known pupil, Kwan, won her Olympic silver medal at the 1998 Nagano Olympics while under his coaching. Throughout their time together in the 1990s, Kwan also won four senior world titles and five of her nine national titles in the sport.

Carroll trained other well-known Olympians including Gracie Gold, Denis Ten and Timothy Goebel. Gold and Ten (who died in 2018 at the age of 25) won bronze medals in the Games in their respective divisions in 2014; Goebel won his bronze in 2002.

Before his retirement from the sport in 2018, Carroll had a pupil competing in the previous six consecutive Olympics ending with PyeongChang.

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Frank Carroll in 2010.

Matthew Stockman/Getty 

“I’m thankful to God that he’s given me the talent because there are many talented coaches in the world and some more talented than I,” Carroll reportedly said in 2010, per NBC Sports. “But I’ve always seemed to come up with the vehicle to do it, the talent they just sort of drift toward me.”

Before his death, Carroll had been inducted into the halls of fame of U.S. Figure Skating, World Figure Skating, the Professional Skaters Association and the International Skating Institute.

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