A man remarked on her smile which, unlike a conventional smile that serves as a mask, seemed to flow out of her depths, a smile that expressed deep inner recollection and peace, and he noticed it even as she and her sister boarded the train for Auschwitz.
My mother was born in 1928, in Nice, France, one year before the arrival of the Great Depression. My great Grandfather arrived in New York from Ireland during the Great Potato Famine of the 1840s. As a boy he found a job delivering phone books for ten cents a day. I was told that he was a determined man. He worked hard and made his way all the way up to becoming vice-president of AT&T, New York.
Once upon a lifetime ago, Shelly Pennefather was the sweetest of shooting stars, an All-American at Villanova and the 1987 national player of the year. Since 1991, she has lived here, in the Poor Clare Monastery, at the end of a quiet cul-de-sac in a very modest middle-class neighborhood.