Sally Jo (Rector) Finnigan, “Long-time MHS English teacher, living life to its fullest, best demonstrative dancer as a member of DEVO in the “Whip It!” Homecoming Staff Skit, first to make a living room in her classroom Sally Finnigan” was called home to be with her Lord and Savior on May 18, 2019 at the age of 78 and joined her son, Tommy Rector in heaven, where she longed to be. Sally’s belief in God helped her continue in life here, as she waited for the day to join him. Her new assignment takes her to a place where dessert is always first, laughter and love are guaranteed, and she will partake in much gabbing, dancing, singing, acting, reading, teaching, helping others and sleeping late.
She is survived by sons Donny (Sheri) Rector and Martin (Cynthia) Rector, sisters Pene and Pat, grandchildren Amber (Phillip Olsen), Amanda (Fernando Vences), Tommy Rector, (almost) 6 great-grandchildren, and nieces and nephews that she loved dearly.
Sally was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on April 22, 1941 to William and Jean Finnigan. After graduating from Iowa State, she spent her professional life as a teacher in both the Milwaukee and Muskego School districts and had the opportunity to work with both colleagues and students that had profound effects on her and her on them. Along with teaching English, she taught forensics and drama to both Middle School and High School. She took her forensics team to State Championships and won several times. She had passion for that and for the drama. She continued to dabble in the theater, and in the past decade or so, performed in musicals and plays including Lend Me a Tenor, along with the role of Ouiser in Steel Magnolias.
She loved her gardens and knitting, spending hours every year making items for everyone she knew for Christmas, including a light up Christmas Tree shaped hat. She spent much time with her children camping, roller skating, cross country skiing, and many other outdoor and adventurous activities. She even got in Donny’s airplane (not sure she loved that) but was always willing to try new things. She loved any time she was with her family.
Sally and her children belonged to Heritage Presbyterian Church, and was the choir leader and even directed and performed in Godspell at that church in their early years. In these later years she belonged to and served as a deacon with Immanuel Presbyterian and, most recently, found a new love of participating in their choir.
Aformal memorial service will be held on Wednesday, May 29 at 4pm at Immanuel Presbyterian Church at 1100 N Astor St. with a reception, celebration time, sharing and dinner following. Sally was vibrant and quirky, so we request that all refrain from wearing black, but wear BRIGHT, LIVELY COLORS to celebrate her life and joy of color! In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin in Sally’s and Tommy's names.
Today is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad. Psalm 118:24 – Sally chose this verse for her funeral…and it is fitting that we rejoice in her new home, but also in all that God has done.