Ranger Exes Memorial - RHS Class of 1960/1962

Linda & Donna Drennan **** PARALLEL LIVES **** This is a story of two sisters, two principals, and two women who made a difference. Pretty and talented, both were majorettes at Ranger High School where both were honor graduates almost half a century ago, Linda in 1960 and Donna in 1962. They both took teaching certificates at North Texas State University and in due time both became school principals; Linda at Evant Elementary school in Evant and Donna at Mary Orr Intermediate School in Mansfield. From the beginning, neither were just another teacher or just another principal; they were special in some way that everybody, students and parents alike, felt but few could put into words. Often thought that if people were still known for some salient feature of their lives such as Richard the Lion heart or William the Conqueror, Linda would be remembered as Linda the Good. I don't think any of us realized until both were gone how often statements about either could be applied to the other. Both died of cancer. Neither gave in to the disease, but stayed at her post almost until the last hour, uncomplaining. Both are now legends at the Evant School, having the playground named in her honor memorializes Linda. A bronze plaque baring her image is mounted on her mini-gym she had built for her children, who called her "Nana" just as her grandchildren did so they could have a place to play in bad weather. A tree was planted along the walkway leading from the school building to the gym and a granite marker at its foot bears her name. In the school office, a huge photograph of her looks out from the wall of honor. At Donna's school, they plan to build an outdoor pavilion in her honor. They each had a memorial though not permitted, would have been their favorite. In Evant the children fashioned a funeral wreath with such material they had to work with construction paper and glue, and fastened it on her office door. After a few days, a child laboriously printed across it in pencil. "I love you Nana, and I will never forget you." At Donna's school, a sixth grader remembered, "When she wasn't so sick she could come to school, she would be all happy and perked up, and she would come into the classes to see how we were doing... she tried as hard as she could to be at school." Linda & Donna Drennan, subjects of this article, were daughters of J.D. & Evangeline Drennan. Evangeline was librarian at Ranger High School and J.D. worked for the Railroad. They lived on Sue St. at the foot of Hospital Hill. I was married to Linda for 35 years. C.L. Yarbrough (Ranger Times 10/99)