Etna’s Molly MacGowan says she will continue to skate and compete

Etna’s Molly MacGowan hasn’t let the stroke she had last year stop her from doing her favorite activity, though it’s not something many her age can enjoy .

MacGowan, 81, is a figure skater.

Last month, MacGowan returned to the ice for the first time in two years at the National Adult Figure Skating Championships in Rochester, Michigan. She was the oldest competitor and placed fourth in her division.

MacGowan, who has participated in national and international events for 18 years, was planning to retire in 2019. A stroke in April 2020 affected his memory and resulted in hearing loss, but luckily it did not affect speech. or the MacGowan movement.

Although she was initially reluctant to enter another contest, MacGowan decided to give it a go with the encouragement of friends and family.

“I was treated like a queen,” MacGowan said of his experience in Michigan. “I had so many great memories.”

During the opening ceremony, MacGowan received a warm applause and a bouquet of flowers. She also received a gold medal for competing over 80, a Yvonne Dowlen crystal plaque and her name engraved on the Yvonne Dowlen trophy.

Etna's Molly MacGowan performed on ice in 2013.

Dowlen was a professional figure skater who spent almost 50 years on the ice. She competed until the age of 90 and died on the ice in 2016. A short documentary, “Edges” was made on the life of Dowlen.

The US Figure Skating Committee – Adult Skating posted on Facebook about MacGowan and the Yvonne Dowlen Trophy.

“The ultimate success in adult skating is to continue skating for life,” the post read. The trophy was presented to MacGowan by the event’s youngest competitor, 21-year-old Alex Polega. “We hope you enjoy this symbol of longevity and friendship in our sport,” read the post.

MacGowan has had a long and eventful career, which culminated in 2005 when she won first place in her division as the oldest competitor at the World Championships in Oberstdoft, Germany. She skated in four or five competitions a year when she was younger, but eventually reduced to two a year.

MacGowan has now set his sights on the national championships next year in Delaware. She said she will go skating as long as she now wants to compete at the nationals next year in Delaware.

“If I’m well enough I’ll be there again,” she said.

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