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Figure skater Christopher Bowman dead

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 11 (UPI) -- Christopher Bowman, a two-time U.S. figure skating champion, has been found dead in a Los Angeles motel. He was 40.

Lt. Joe Bale of the Los Angeles County Coroner's office said Bowman, who won the top prize at the U.S. Championships in 1989 and 1992, was found dead Thursday of a possible drug overdose, the Los Angeles Times reported Friday. The coroner's office hadn't determined Thursday whether the death was accidental or a suicide, the report said.

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Bowman, who was nicknamed "Bowman the Showman" for his skills on the ice, finished second at the 1989 world championships and followed the performance with a third-place finish the next year. He narrowly missed earning a medal at the 1992 Games with a fourth-place finish.

Bowman moved to Los Angeles last year to coach skating, the Times said.

Brian Boitano, the 1988 Olympic figure skating gold medalist, praised Bowman's talent.

"If I had to pick the three most talented skaters of all time, I would pick Christopher as one," Boitano told the Times. "He had natural charisma, natural athleticism, he could turn on a crowd in a matter of seconds and he always seemed so relaxed about it."

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