January 25, 2010
This week, we have a story written by Crystal Thompson, from Nanaimo, BC. Crystal is a figure skater. She wanted more education so she could get a job. She was in Literacy Nanaimo, now called Literacy Central Vancouver Island, before and decided to come back. Her goal was to start writing books. She has written six children’s books so far. What she likes about the program is that she gets the help she needs. Crystal hopes to read better. Her boss has told her that she sees a big improvement.
In 1996 I qualified for the National Winter Games in Calgary. The one thing I was not expecting was to meet Don Jackson, the World & Olympic Men’s Champion figure skater. He was the first person to land the triple Lutz. He was the honorary head coach for these games.
Two years later I met Karen Magnuson in Parksville. She was a former Olympic Champion. She had donated to the Special Olympic Fund for figure skating.
Three years later, in 2001, I got to meet Elvis Stojko, another world champion. He was here for two days and it was cool to watch him skate. I showed him all the medals that I had won since I started skating. I told him when he was in Calgary for Skate Canada that I was in Ottawa competing and that I had left a dance to go back to my room to watch him compete. He thought that was cool.
Also in 2001 I went to the World Figure Skating Championships that were in Vancouver. I met the competitive dance teams of Shae-Lynn Bourne & Victor Kraatz and also Aaron Lowe & Megan Wing.
In 2007 I went to Whitehorse for the Canada Winter Games where I met Aaron Lowe again. I also met Lesley Hawker, a Canadian bronze medalist.
At the training camp that I went to in Burnaby I got to meet Brian Orser, the ‘88 Olympics silver medalist. That was cool because he came over and helped me with one of my jumps.
In Kelowna at the Special Olympics’ Winter Games I met Emanuel Sandhu , an Olympic competitor. He was handing the gold medals out to the winners and I got my picture taken with him.
It was cool meeting people who have been my heroes.
[This story was taken with permission from In Our Own Words, September 2008, published by Literacy Nanaimo.]