The August 2003 issue of "Blades on Ice" has a very nice feature article on one of my favorite skaters, 1980 Olympic silver medalist Linda Fratianne. Linda is again performing in various ice shows, on a somewhat limited basis, but it's great to know she is out there on the ice performing again occasionally.
The article mentioned that Linda has lived in Sun Valley, Idaho since her 1988 marriage to former ski racer Nick Maricich. Her daughter, Ali (Alexandra), was born in 1991 and is now 12 years old. Fratianne appeared in the Sun Valley summer and winter ice shows for many years, and she is now in her third year as head pro at the Sun Valley skating school.
Sadly, Linda and her husband divorced in August of 2001, which resulted in a number of changes. They sold the family house, and Linda moved to a different neighborhood in Sun Valley. Apparently, Linda and Nick share custody of their daughter, and Ali is shuttled back and forth between her parents, two weeks at a time.
Since her divorce, Fratianne has been spending time in Southern California working with her old coach, Frank Carroll. She teaches students side by side with Frank and sometimes takes over for him when he has to be away from the
Quite a lot of the article focused on Fratianne's still bitter memories of finishing second at the 1980 Olympics. She came into the Olympics as the defending World champion and finished second to East Germany's Annet Poetszch. In essence, Linda felt that she had let her family, country, and coach down, and she would not look at the silver medal for years.
The spectre of politics was mentioned in the article:
"I remember about a year before the Olympics, Carlo Fassi came to my mom and dad and said he wasn't sure Frank had the political connections to get me the gold - if they'd put me with him, he could almost assure you that their daughter would get that gold medal......My parents didn't even have to ask me about that, as I was completely loyal to Frank." She added, "Sometimes I wonder what would have happened back in 1980 if the USFSA had gotten behind me like the Canadian Association got behind their pair team. But back then, you just did your job and went home were glad you weren't third."