LAKE OSWEGO — Holy Names Sister Magdalen Basick, 105, died March 12 at Mary's Woods at Marylhurst. Funeral arrangements are pending and will be announced later.

Magdalen, born Jan. 25, 1916, in Colorado, was the daughter of Matt and Anna Markovich Basick, who both came from Croatia in the early 1900s. The two met and married in Colorado. When Magdalen was 18 months old, her father was killed in a railroad construction accident. Her mother married John Yurkovich when Magdalen was 8. Her siblings included sisters, Sister Mary Doloreen (Catherine), Marie, Sister Joseph Mary (Mary), Anne, Matilda (Plowman); brother, Daniel; and half-brother, Emil.

The family moved to Oregon and Magdalen grew up on a small farm near Helvetia in a home without electricity or running water. During grade school, she attended a rural school with four grades in a room. Magdalen’s mother was interested in furthering her children's education and through a Protestant teacher at Portland's Lincoln high school she heard about St. Mary's Academy. Arrangements were made for the oldest daughter, Catherine, to attend as a student boarder. Each of the Basick girls followed in turn.

Like her two older sisters, Magdalen entered the Sisters of the Holy Names after graduation, receiving the religious name Sister Ruth Ann Mary. She taught elementary school for many years, becoming one of those famed eighth grade teachers loved and remembered by her students. She taught in Seattle, Spokane, Medford, Coos Bay, St. Paul, Eugene and Salem, and served as principal at Our Lady of the Lake School in Lake Oswego.

Her last teaching assignment was at Holy Redeemer School in North Portland. Her connection with that parish did not end when she left the classroom. She stayed on as bookkeeper and office helper until she reached her 90s and moved to Mary’s Woods at Marylhurst to be with her sister, Sister Joseph Mary. In the past year Sister Magdalen happily celebrated her 105th birthday and her 85th anniversary as a Sister of the Holy Names.

Sister Magdalen is survived by her nieces and nephews and members of her religious community. Remembrances may be made to the Sisters of the Holy Names, P.O. Box 398, Marylhurst, OR 97036 or online at