In Memoriam

Sister Ann Rena Shinkey, OP


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)

make a memorial giftMemorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221. 


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Avatar  Roberta /jeffrey simpson 8 months agoReply

Sorry to hear thru a memorial post that does not even mention any of sister anne"marilyn" shinkey's time in the town of STREATOR, IL. Where she retired to after serving many years with our lord....she resided in our neighborhood for many years, welcomed time on the porch, bike rides and stories of her life with our family , and our neighbors. We knew her for a very long time til she moved from the house across the street in 2011, I wondered for years where she went after she fell ill, finally was told she went back to the sisters home. Never a letter, bc we had no address, but she was never far away in our minds and hearts...she was loved by all of us and will be sadly missed. May you Rest at your masters home now and start your new journey but please still keep your arms around us ...loved and missed.....Bobbie & Jeff Simpson on Madison st in her town of STREATOR.

Avatar  Troy A Westerhold 8 months agoReply

Marilyn,will be missed by our family,not only was she life long resident on our block,she was a great friend,great neighbor & became a adopted member in our family. She helped with our dad when he got sick,was there when he passed away,again when our mom got sick & passed away.was a great cook & baker.loved to garden & was an animal lover.was very strong person & very independent .when she got sick we stepped in to help her out as much as we could.she became grandma Nun to my brothers kids.was right over to hold them when they were born.Marilyn you will be missed from all us in the westerhold family, but know your in a much better place now & your with your mom & dad now.we will see you when God calls us home.

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Our Adrian Dominican cemetery with its circular headstones is a beautiful place of rest for women who gave their lives in service to God — and a peaceful place for contemplation and remembrance. 

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