(1933-2021) I lay claim to being pure “Dominican” from birth. Marilyn Rita Shinkey, the future Sister Ann Rena, was not only the daughter of a mother born to Italian-immigrant parents, but her mother’s name – Rena Dominic – even fit the bill. Born in Streator, Illinois, on August 31, 1933, Marilyn was the only child of Rena and Frederick Shinkey. Frederick was born in Paxton, Illinois, and had farmed and ranched out West before returning to his home state and settling in Streator, where he worked as a plant foreman. Marilyn’s childhood was a happy, active one. She loved sports and anything to do with the outdoors. From the age of ten she knew she wanted to be a teacher, and because of her athletic as well as academic abilities, she earned scholarships in both areas to Illinois State University. She earned her bachelor’s degree in education, majoring in physical education, in 1955. “Only the hand of God could account for my next move,” she wrote in her autobiography. After graduating from college, she was hired to teach physical education and social studies at Mount St. Mary Academy. It was her introduction to the Adrian Dominican Sisters, as well as something of a re-introduction to Catholicism in general; her parents were both lapsed Catholics, and although she had been baptized and made her first Communion she had not been confirmed. “Needless to say, that was completed in my three years at the Mount,” she wrote. Read more about Sister Ann Rena (pdf) Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221. Leave your comments and remembrances (if you don't see the comment box below, click on the "Read More" link).