Inoue and Baldwin Donate Champions on Ice Fees to Memorial Fund
|Rena Inoue and John Baldwin after their free skate at Worlds|
Photo by Michelle Wojdyla
(4/16/04) — 2004 U.S. Figure Skating pairs champions Rena Inoue & John Baldwin have announced the donation of all fees they earn while touring with the Champions on Ice Tour this spring to the U.S. Figure Skating Memorial Fund. The Memorial Fund provides qualified U.S. Figure Skating athletes who are in need of financial aid with monetary assistance to pursue their goals both inside and outside the competitive arena.
Both Inoue and Baldwin received aid from the program in the past and have seized this opportunity as a way to help other skaters achieve their goals.
“Many families make financial sacrifices in the hopes of fulfilling the dreams of talented skaters,” Baldwin said. “Pressure can be tremendous for a skater, and Rena and I hope to help alleviate some of that burden by donating our Champions on Ice fees to the Memorial Fund.”
Inoue and Baldwin have just completed their fourth and most successful season together. After winning gold at the 2004 State Farm U.S. Championships they went on to place 10th at the World Figure Skating Championships. Inoue is a two-time Olympian for Japan in singles and pairs. Baldwin is a veteran of the State Farm U.S. Championships dating back to 1986 as a novice competitor.
“We have been very fortunate to have the support of our families and that of U.S. Figure Skating,” Inoue said. “We want to show our appreciation by making this donation.”
The U.S. Figure Skating Memorial Fund was established on February 23, 1961, as a tribute to the 18 U.S. athletes who lost their lives in an airplane crash just nine days prior. The athletes - as well as 16 international officials, judges, coaches and family members, plus 27 other passengers and 11 crew members - crashed in Belgium on their way to the 1961 World Figure Skating Championships. The “living memorial” is committed to awarding skating and academic scholarships to those athletes who have demonstrated excellent competitive results and/or academic achievements.
Those wishing to make a donation to the Memorial Fund can do so online by going to the donation form on this site.