Sports fans from the 80’s will no doubt remember former teen tennis protege Andrea Jaeger.
Jaeger was ranked as high as the World’s # 2 female tennis player at the age of 16. She made the finals of Wimbledon and the French Open as a teenager. Jaeger won 11 professional tennis tournaments and made over $ 1 million on tour. She made millions more in endorsements.
Jaeger’s career ended early (1987) after a shoulder injury. Following her retirement, Jaeger devoted her life to charity and public service. Eventually she became a Anglican Dominican nun.
A British tabloid yesterday carried a feature on Jaeger. It’s entitled, “Why I Became a Nun.” Jaeger denies being a teen burn-out but says she never enjoyed life as a professional tennis player.
Jaeger also says she’s given away all her money but “has never been happier.”
“I had millions of dollars. I had a Mercedes Benz at 17. Who needs a Mercedes Benz at 17? I sold it at 19 and gave the money away and used it to buy toys for kids in hospitals. My parents were shocked. For six months they thought I was joking. I put all my tennis earnings into the foundation. I had enough that I didn’t ever have to work again but now I don’t have any left.”
Jaeger also says she gets a fullfillment out of her charity work that she never could have gotten from tennis:
“If you’ve brought joy to a child, or protected them in their need, if you’ve lent a hand and put them under your wing, for me there’s nothing that compares.”