Road To The Olympic Games

Figure Skating

Keegan Messing performs heartfelt gala tribute to late brother at Skate America

It's been an emotional weekend for Canada's Keegan Messing. On Sunday, the 27-year-old figure skater paid tribute to his recently deceased brother with a heartfelt gala performance at Skate America.

Paxon Messing, 26, died in a motorcycle crash in September

Canadian figure skater Keegan Messing paid tribute to his younger brother, who died in September, with a heartfelt gala performance at Skate America on Sunday in Last Vegas. (ISU/CBC Sports)

It's been an emotional weekend for Canada's Keegan Messing.

On Sunday, the 27-year-old figure skater paid tribute to his recently deceased brother with a heartfelt gala performance at Skate America in Las Vegas. 

Less than a month ago, the Sherwood Park, Alta., native lost his younger brother, Paxon, when an SUV collided with the 26-year-old's motorcycle.

Steeling himself with a series of deep breaths to reign in his emotions, Messing began his performance by carrying a photo of his brother to centre ice.  

Skating to Here I Am by Bryan Adams, Messing brought the audience to its feet with his artistry and athleticism.

With tears streaming down his face, he then concluded his performance by taking hold of his heart and kneeling beside his brother's photo.

WATCH | Keegan Messing's tear-filled tribute to his recently lost brother:

Canadian figure skater Keegan Messing dedicated his performance in the Skate America gala in Las Vegas to his late younger brother Paxon, who was killed in September when an SUV collided with his motorcycle. 4:55

"Coming here this week was a huge decision for me with everything that's happened," said Messing prior to the competition, in which he placed fourth with a total score of 239.34.

"Just being on the ice the last few weeks has been one of the most difficult things that I've had to do. I've just tried to stay physically prepared, rely on my training and be able to put out a performance like that."

Messing, however, began the competition with an equally emotional tribute, debuting his new short program — which he specifically made for this new wife Lane, who he married over the summer.

"For her to be here to see it was very special to me. I have some great support here with me. My wife's here, both my parents and some very close friends for support. Honestly, I couldn't ask for a better situation ... I've got some good people so I'm feeling pretty good," Messing said.

WATCH | Messing debuts his new short program:

Sherwood Park, Alberta's Keegan Messing finished third with a score of 96.34 at Skate America in Las Vegas. 6:25

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