1919-2012: Skippy Baxter

(12/19/12) - Lloyd Valdemar "Skippy" Baxter, a member of the U.S. and Professional Skater's Association halls of fame, passed away Dec. 18 in Santa Rosa, Calif. He was 93 years old.

Baxter won two medals, men's bronze and pairs silver, with partner Hedy Stenuf at the 1940 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Cleveland. Baxter, like many other skaters of his time, never realized his Olympic dream as the Games were canceled in 1940 and '44 due to World War II.

A combat veteran who served in Italy, Baxter skated in more than 5,000 shows and taught skating for nearly 50 years. He attempted more than 60,000 backflips during his longtime show career.

Baxter and his brother Meryl, also deceased, ran the Redwood Empire Ice Arena, also known as "Snoopy's Home Ice," which opened in 1969. The venue was built by the late Charles Schulz, creator of "Peanuts," and his wife, Joyce.

Baxter was born Dec. 6, 1919, in Saskatchewan, Canada. He is survived by two children, Debbie Baxter and David Baxter, and two grandchildren. His wife, Phyllis, passed away in 2008.

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