Robin Frentz Isaacs died on Monday, September 6th surrounded by her family. First diagnosed with cancer in 1995, she fought bravely against the disease after reoccurrence in 2012. Her courage and grace while going through the ordeal was a lesson for all of us.
Robin was born to parents, Barbara (Bobbie) and William Frentz, on November 21, 1952, in Louisville, Kentucky where she grew up with her two sisters, Alice Frentz and Mary Frentz Bellino, her brother, William Frentz, and many cousins. She attended the Kentucky Home School for Girls (now Kentucky Country Day School) and learned how to play tennis on the courts in Seneca Park. After graduating, she went on to attend Ithaca College transferring to the University of Colorado at Boulder where she was on the varsity tennis team.
In the very early 70s while in Boulder, Colorado she met Chogyam Trungpa , a preeminent teacher of Tibetan Buddhism. He was working with her cousins, John, and Steve Baker, who set up what became the Naropa Institute in Boulder as well as the Shambala movement. She carried her devotion to Buddhism throughout her life. After graduating from college, she taught tennis.
In 1983 she married Ken Isaacs and moved to Massachusetts where they lived on their farms in Walpole and South Dartmouth raising Hereford beef cattle. Two daughters followed, Katie Isaacs and Jenny Isaacs. She was an avid tennis player, had a small garden on the farm and was surrounded by her beloved animals, her horse, Five Alarm and the many labs and labradoodles. In 1995, she graduated from Harvard Divinity School with a Master of Theological Studies (MTS) degree where she was involved in the Pluralism Project.
She participated in other nonprofits as she ran the Massachusetts Chapter of the Frontier Nursing Society which helped bring midwifery to Appalachia. After the family moved to Lincoln in 2000 she worked with the Friends of the Sudanese, a nonprofit helping the lost boys of Sudan who settled in the Lincoln area. She also was active with the DCRP (Depression Clinical & Research Program), an advisory committee of the Department of Psychiatry at Mass General Hospital,
In 1995, she was first diagnosed with breast cancer and several years later determined that she carried the BRCA gene. She worked with a group at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston and other nonprofits to spread awareness of this gene among the population.
Robin was a very spiritual person always studying and practicing the Dharma. She was a natural athlete and played tennis with the classic style. She provided love and support to her family and those around her and approached her illness with grace, courage, and determination. She will be truly missed by her children, Kate and Jenny Isaacs and her husband, Ken Isaacs as well as her sisters, nieces, and nephews many cousins and dear friends.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be sent in Robin's name to:
Virginia Thurston Healing Garden,
145 Bolton Road
Harvard, MA 01451
Arrangements under the care of Concord Funeral Home, A Life Celebration Home, Concord, MA 01742 978-369-3388 To share a memory or offer a condolence visit: www.concordfuneral.com