If you see someone on the Frog Pond who can really skate, it’s probably former Olympic figure skater Scott Hamilton, who’s in town to raise money for cancer research through his Scott Hamilton CARES Foundation.
Thursday, the gold medalist is hosting a free event at the Frog Pond prior to the Boston Common holiday tree lighting. He has also partnered with the Skating Club of Boston to host the Sk8 to Elimin8 Cancer benefit at the club’s Brighton location Friday.
A cancer survivor who received treatment at Boston Children’s Hospital, Hamilton will visit several local hospitals, and joining him will be Molly Malone, a 17-year-old cancer survivor from Lynnfield who, after attending last year’s Skating Spectacular in a wheelchair, will be performing this year. “That’s the type of story that really inspires people to face their cancer with great determination and confidence,” Hamilton told us.
Though treatment options have progressed a lot since Hamilton battled a pituitary brain tumor, he still sees a great need for funding for treatments like immunotherapy.
“Back in the ’70s, when [Richard] Nixon declared war against cancer, the funding was driving the science,” he said. “Now, the science has really distanced itself from the funding. What I would like to do is do my part to close that gap.”
Hamilton visited the Skating Club as a child; his grandparents lived in Weymouth, so his family spent a lot of time in the area. He’s excited to return, especially because of Boston’s prominence in the skating world.
“It just seems like, right now, Boston is the center of the universe for American skating, with hosting the  US Nationals and then hosting a really amazing world championship [last year],” he said. “Pretty much anything Boston touches now they do at such a high level.”
While we had him on the phone, we asked Hamilton about the ballyhooed new film “I, Tonya,” about the Tonya Harding-Nancy Kerrigan scandal. “It really is a tragic story all the way around,” said Hamilton. “I’ve moved on. I don’t want to really participate in it.”