Your Turn

Your Turn/Annette Heinecke

Annette Heinecke
Posted: Mar. 8, 2020 12:30 am Updated: Mar. 8, 2020 12:41 am


When I was a kid, I wanted to be ... an orthopedic surgeon because I had so many broken ankles and torn ligaments when I was growing up.

What would you rather be doing right now? I love spending time with my kids and grandchildren, especially when we get to bake cookies together.

Shhhhhh! Don't tell anyone that ... in high school, I was a starting guard for my basketball team and played for the Putnam County Midgets. (I was a Midgetette -- totally true and hilarious because I am 5'2" tall.)

Other than your wedding day and/or the birth of your children, what was your proudest moment? Watching our kids earn honors and awards over the years. I feel the same way at every moment.

It really stinks when ... people are rude to store clerks and don't pick up after themselves in stores. The people who work there are working hard and deserve respect. They are most certainly not our maids.

What word in the dictionary would your face be next to? Genuine and dedicated.

I always laugh when ... we talk about some of the dumb things we have done over the years. Love to hear and tell those stories!

Invite any three people, living or dead, to dinner. Who are they? My Dad. (He passed away due to cancer in 2011, and I miss talking to him.) Dr. Phil. (He has so much wisdom and just tells it like it is.) Mother Teresa (first to hear her perspective on what is going on in the world now as well as historically and to talk about her ministries to the world in her time on earth. She lived through so much and saw so much and chose to live her life making a difference -- truly inspiring to the world.)

At the end of a really long day at work, I like to ... change into my pajamas, get a refill on my tea and just relax and talk to one of the kids or watch TV with my husband.

People who knew me in high school thought I was ... shy.

My most unforgettable brush with greatness was ... I've never met anyone famous.

I would drop all my plans tonight if I had the chance to ... go away with my husband for the weekend, just the two of us.

If someone gave me a million dollars, there is STILL no way I would ... stop working. I truly love what I do and believe it is my calling and ministry to the people who live in Hancock Village, their families and the team and caregivers who work so diligently here.

America should be more concerned about ... what God would have us do and be less concerned about our agendas. We spend so much time being politically correct or being so arrogant about our opinions and positions that we fail to look to the One who gives wisdom and grace to those who ask.

I'm OK if there's ever a national shortage of ... coffee. I love the smell but hate the taste of coffee.

When I'm on the internet, I always go to ... a variety of sites looking at new advances in research related to the care and treatment of those who are suffering from one of the dementias.

What is the most useful piece of advice you have ever received? My Dad always told me I can achieve anything. His belief in me was unwavering and meant a lot to me. I always believed if I was willing to do the work, anything is possible.

When I'm cruising down the road, I'm likely listening to ... podcasts or praise and worship music.

I always get sentimental when ... I think about those special moments over the years growing up or with my husband or our kids and grandchildren, when I reflect on the blessings of my family.

The older I get, the more I realize ... there is way too much fighting in the world over things that really don't matter and not enough focus on the thins that do.

If I had one "do-over," I would ... remember to take more time and trips with my husband, just the two of us. Life is busy and hectic, and I never regret the time I spend with him.

My favorite item of clothing is ... probably my pajamas -- so comfy and relaxing after a long day!

If I've learned anything at all ... God is in control, and He will lead us if we allow Him to and He is always right there. All we have to do is ask.


Annette Heinecke, 54, is executive director for Hancock Village in Carthage, Ill. It provides care to seniors through a supportive living community (Hickory Grove) as well as two memory care homes (Maple Grove). She is married to John Heinecke, and together they have six children and four grandchildren. She grew up on a farm in Missouri, and her husband farms near Golden, Ill.