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Skating eases career demands of military service



ADULT GOLD FREE SKATE High school sweethearts Katrina Bohn and

husband Cody have experienced many travel adventures together, including exploring Eu- rope, in the course of his six years in the Air Force. Together for 12 years, their most recent move has them stationed in Las Vegas. Never knowing how long they will be in

a certain location or where they will go next, Bohn was excited when they moved to Dover, Del., four years ago and she found herself with- in driving distance of a rink for the first time in 13 years. “Finding adult skating has been life-chang-

ing,” Bohn, a skating coach and costume de- signer, said. Skating as a child had taught Bohn dis- cipline and goal-setting, attributes that have come in handy as a military wife. Bohn, who trained under Eddie Shipstad in Colorado, completed her juvenile free skate test when a family job transfer forced her to give up skating sooner than anticipated. As an adult, leaving her skating family in

Delaware was an upsetting experience. Yet fol- lowing her husband across the country to pur- sue his dreams has also given her back her own dreams and revived her sense of self. Bohn has performed solos in ice shows; she

won the championship gold ladies title at the 2013 U.S. Adult Championships, which earned her some prestigious hardware and her pho- to in SKATING magazine. She trains four days a week, two hours at a time. Bohn has almost completed the moves-in-the-field track and is working on gold dances. “I know that anything is possible no matter

your age,” Bohn said. Prior to their Las Vegas assignment, Cody

was often gone for one to four weeks at a time. “It can be difficult and challenging to be

apart, but it really makes you appreciate time together,” Bohn said.



Jessica Claypool received her first pair of

skates and group lessons in 2005 as a high school graduation gift from her parents. “I’d always been interested in skating, so

when my hometown theatre closed and I knew I wouldn’t be competing in dance or doing the- atre anymore, I decided to try skating,” she said. Jessica credits skating for meeting her hus-

band Wade, a 12-year veteran of the Air Force, and for

providing therapy during difficult

times. Wade proposed to her on their home ice in

a touching way. He sprayed her with ice from his hockey skates, then bent down to wipe the snow off her boot. When Jessica looked down, he was holding a ring. Eighteen months after marrying, Wade was stationed in South Korea and Claypool stayed behind. During that time Jessica’s younger broth-

er Jeremy, who had been in the Air National Guard in Arizona, was killed with his girlfriend in a motorcycle accident. To honor them, Jessi- ca performed her dramatic program, for which she prerecorded herself singing, at the 2013 U.S. Adult Championships. She won the pewter medal.

Upon Wade’s return from Korea in the sum- mer of 2013, the couple moved from Washing- ton to New Jersey. Changes necessitate new coaches, rinks and schedules. The couple is thankful to be home together, especially now that they are expecting their first child. “I dislike being apart from him and moving

away from family and friends, but I enjoy the adventures we have because of the military,” Jessica said.


PRELIMINARY DANCE, ADULT PRE-BRONZE FREESTYLE Lynn Stone does not consider himself to

have had any great achievements thus far in life, saying he is “working on it.” But a 42-year military service career, noteworthy community involvement and a commitment to his faith dis- pute his self-assessment. Stone discovered skating the same year he joined the Air Force Reserve Officer Train- ing Corp (ROTC), in 1972. Growing up in New Orleans, there were no rinks. As a senior, he traveled to Washington, D.C., with a group of high school students to see U.S. government in action through a program called First View. He skated for the first time there, but not until 1997 did he begin lessons and make a commit- ment to figure skating. “First and foremost I consider skating a gift

and privilege from God, particularly given my current age,” Stone said. “It’s one of my greatest passions and a lifetime pursuit.” Stone is also pursuing an announcing ap-

pointment, lending his voice to numerous skat- ing events and singing the national anthem. Stone has kept busy since his retirement from active duty in 2000, participating in church choir and mentoring activities, community the- ater, performing at charity fundraisers and vol- unteering for hospice, National Jewish Health and other nonprofit organizations. Military life has provided Stone opportuni-

ties to skate in many cities while at different bas- es. He trains between two and five days a week. “The passion, patience, support and en-

couragement I’ve received from my coaches, past and present, is remarkable,” Stone said. “Most times we can achieve anything when we invest, make the commitment and have faith.” Supporting his local “Nutcracker on Ice”

holiday show every two years, he loves that his daughter skated from age 4 until she entered col- lege.

“My granddaughter started at 4 also, skat-

ing for five years,” Stone said. “Skating is an opportunity to demonstrate my spiritual faith. What we are able to achieve in life is typically limited only by ourselves.”

52 APRIL 2014

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