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It is with profound sadness we announce the passing of Kristin Abbott, 41, of Park Ridge, Illinois (formerly of Sylvania, Ohio). She passed away peacefully with her family by her side on Sunday, January 21, 2024 after a brief, but courageous battle with cancer.
Born on September 3, 1982 to Linda and Duane Abbott, Kristin’s journey was one of extraordinary breadth and depth. She graduated 3rd in her class from Sylvania Southview High School in 2001. Kristin played French Horn in the Toledo Youth Orchestra and skated with the Ann Arbor Hockettes International Jr. Synchronized Skating Team.
In 2005 Kristin graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio with a Bachelor of Arts, Cum Laude, in Chemistry and Zoology. While at Miami, she skated internationally with the Varsity Synchronized Skating Team for four years. Kristin continued to be active in volunteer and leadership positions and recognized for her academic excellence as she received her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Toledo College of Medicine in 2009. After graduation she completed her Residency in Family Medicine at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital and completed a Fellowship in Sports Medicine at the University of Minnesota.
Kristin began working as a team physician for Northwestern University Athletics/Sports Medicine in 2013, providing medical services to multiple teams including field hockey, lacrosse and women's basketball. In 2020 she transitioned to the role of Medical Director for Northwestern Medicine Student Health Services. Kristin also held a faculty position of Assistant Professor of Family and Community Medicine through Northwestern's Feinberg School of Medicine. As a leader and physician, Kristin has profoundly and positively impacted the health and well-being of thousands of students and student-athletes at Northwestern.
Kristin’s love of synchronized team skating led her to volunteer with the United States Figure Skating Association where she held an appointment as a national technical specialist for synchronized skating, and served as the vice chair of the technical panel committee for that discipline. Kristin worked to elevate the sport of synchronized team skating toward inclusion in the Olympic Games. Sharing her passion in supporting the health and well-being of athletes, Kristin was also a physician in the national network for Team USA figure skaters. She served as the physician for Team USA figure skaters at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing, China. According to Kyleigh Gaff, Director, High Performance Operations of US Figure Skating, “Along with being our 2022 Olympic physician, Dr. Abbott was the primary physician to get us through the COVID pandemic. She was chair and vice chair of sports science and medicine committee for U.S. Figure Skating and served as a participant in the USOPC NGB medical standards working group. She has published and co-authored reviewed articles related to figure skating and sports medicine. She was a champion for mental health and diversity, equity inclusion (specifically as it relates to gender identification and LGBTQ). During her tenure as chair and vice chair, Dr. Abbott was committed to quality standards among our Team USA providers and medical standard of care revisions. Dr. Abbott was the guiding and steady light for U.S. Figure Skating in her many years of service. Without her, we would not have gotten to the Games. Above all, her compassionate care, and calm positive approach to each athlete patient who she treated with the utmost of respect, may be her greatest legacy.” Kristin was a beloved doctor, mentor and friend to all the Olympic athletes and her colleagues throughout her career.
Beyond her professional endeavors, Kristin was a beloved mother, wife, daughter and sister. With an introduction through Kristin's childhood friend, Kristin and Kevin met, fell in love and were married in 2013. They grew their family and made their home in Park Ridge. Kristin shared her creativity with her watercolor painting and crocheting, had a sense of adventure, and deep and enduring love for us all.
She is survived by husband, Kevin Pansky; son, Declan and daughter, Teagan; parents, Duane and Linda Abbott; grandmother, Helen Soucek; sister Erin DiLorenzo (Nick); nephew, Mason and niece, Harper; in-laws, Mike and Maureen Pansky; brother-in-law, James Pansky; sisters-in-law, Rita Pansky and Jenna Bryant, MD (Chris); and niece, Lily.
Visitation is Saturday, February 3, 2024 at Ryan-Parke Funeral Home, 120 S. Northwest Hwy, Park Ridge, Illinois, from 10 am – 12 pm. Funeral service will follow at 12:30 pm at St. Paul of the Cross, 140 S. Northwest Hwy., Park Ridge. (Funeral may be viewed via live stream at www.spc-church.org) A Celebration of Life will be held in Sylvania, Ohio at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions to an education fund for her children (https://www.gofundme.com/f/kristin-abbott-memorial-education-fund), or to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation in Kristin’s name (https://give.bcrf.org).
To plant a beautiful memorial tree in memory of Kristin E. Abbott, please visit our Tree Store.