Former Tennis Prodigy Finds Purpose as Nun

Andrea Jaeger helps child athletes, cancer, and abuse victims
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 26, 2009 2:20 PM CDT
Andrea Jaeger, a 15-year-old American player, on the Centre Court at Wimbledon where she beat Britain's Virginia Wade in two sets.   (Getty Images)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – The world met her as a plucky 14-year-old tennis phenom with pigtails, a bratty star who fought her way to No. 2 in the world rankings. But that early success came with a heavy pricetag, and Andrea Jaeger has found her place as an Anglican Dominican nun, the Washington Post reports, devoting life and fortune to helping kids with cancer, child athletes, and child abuse victims.

Jaeger was scarred by a childhood lived hotel-to-hotel, coached by a distant, abusive father. Today’s prodigies have more advisers and agents, but “they are not being nurtured or protected,” Jaeger says. So she’s worked with tennis groups, and urged US Olympic officials to provide greater emotional and spiritual care for athletes. “I’m not saying I’m a well-balanced human being,” she says. “I just know I love what I do. I have peace.” (Read more Andrea Jaeger stories.)