Nancy Kerrigan Pays Tribute to Slain Colorado Cop Who Was Her Childhood Figure Skating Friend

by Desiree Murphy 2:49 PM PST, November 29, 2015
Photo: Getty Images

News of the shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic that left three dead and nine injured in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on Friday hit home for former Olympic skater Nancy Kerrigan.

In a new interview with the Boston Herald, the 46-year-old reveals that Officer Garrett Swasey, the cop who was killed in the line of duty, was one of her childhood friends and fellow skaters.

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Kerrigan says that Swasey, a police officer at the University of Colorado - Colorado Springs, was "like a brother" to her, and they even had nicknames for each other.

Photo: University of Colorado, Colorado Springs

"I called him 'Ugh,' he called me 'Yuck,'" she says. "We were always teasing each other like a brother and sister."

"I could feel the energy and excitement of him rooting for me," she recalls of a time Swasey, 44, was cheering her on at a United States Figure Skating Championship. "It made me laugh. Instead of listening to music, I found that humor helped, it was good for me and it helped push me to do better."

"I always felt, for years and years, that he was definitely a big part of that," Kerrigan adds. "I am very thankful for having him in my life."

The late police officer was originally from Stoneham, Massachusetts, the same town outside Boston where Kerrigan grew up. He moved to Colorado in the '90s to further train as a champion ice dancer at the Olympic Training Center, later retiring from the sport there and moving into law enforcement.

WATCH: Nancy Kerrigan Gets Back On the Ice With ET

"His dad picked me up at school every day to take me to the rink," Kerrigan reveals. "We were together an awful lot as children. I would ride my bike to his house and we’d hang out at the pool. We were together all the time, whether we were skating or not."

One thing Kerrigan will always remember of her late friend is his constant smile and heart of gold.

"I don't ever remember him ever being in a bad mood," she remembers. "He was always ready to listen, to be there, to help, to encourage somebody else. He was just a really good friend, very loyal and kind. He had a big, giant, smile all the time, even when we were teasing each other."

On Sunday, the names of the two other victims that were found dead were announced -- Ke'Arre Stewart, a 29-year-old Army veteran who served in Iraq and the father of two children, and Jennifer Markovsky, a 36-year-old married mother of two.

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Back in 2014, ET caught up Kerrigan, where she revealed that she rarely gets to lace up her skates now that's she's a mother of three.

Watch the video below to see her back in action on the ice rink with ET.