Frank Carroll, who guided to Evan Lysacek and Michelle Kwan to Olympic and world figure skating titles, spends his last day as a top-level figure skating coach on Thursday after 58 years.
The news was confirmed by Carroll’s assistant, who said the 80-year-old will continue to be available to help skaters but will not travel to top-level events as he has done for decades. It was previously reported by Icenetwork and reporter Phil Hersh that Carroll coached at his last Olympics in PyeongChang.
Carroll, based in Southern California, has been inducted into at least four Halls of Fame: U.S. Figure Skating, World Figure Skating, Professional Skaters Association and International Skating Institute.
He was best known for coaching Kwan for most of the 1990s. Under Carroll, she won the 1994 World junior title, four senior world titles and five of her nine national titles, plus an Olympic silver medal in 1998.
Carroll then coached Lysacek to two Olympics in 2006 and 2010, guiding him to gold at the Vancouver Winter Games. Lysacek, who called Carroll an “incredible technician and an awesome psychologist,” marked Carroll’s only Olympic champion pupil.
“This is just frosting on the cake for me,” Carroll, an avid reader of historical novels, said after Lysacek earned gold, according to The Associated Press. “It’s not something I coveted after a while. It was something I thought maybe would never happen.”
Carroll’s first star was Linda Fratianne, who earned the 1980 Olympic silver medal (an event Carroll has said was rigged by judges in favor of East German Anett Potzsch) and world titles in 1977 and 1979.
Later, he coached 2002 Olympic bronze medalist Timothy Goebel, the late 2014 Olympic bronze medalist Denis Ten and Gracie Gold among scores of elite international skaters.
Carroll coached at least one skater at each of the last six Olympics.
“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 said in 2010, according to the AP. “But I’ve always seemed to come up with the vehicle to do it, the talent they just sort of drift toward me.”
Carroll was a successful junior skater before becoming a coach in 1960.
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What a week… Celebrated Frank's retirement, made it through #GlacierFallsSummerClassic with smiles and medals, and had to say goodbye to a few of my students moving on to new chapters in their lives. It has been quite the journey this summer, but I am grateful for all the experiences I've had with everyone in these photos (and not pictured!) Alas…too many feelings and not enough (eloquent) words! #toyotasportscenter #summerofexcellence #legend #frankcarroll #usfigureskating #coachlife #coachsquad