Falling in love

Bob and Susan Crowell

It was New Year's Eve, Dec. 31, 1968, in the great city of San Francisco. I was a young Ensign in the Navy and had orders to pick up the USS WADDELL DDG-24 in the coastal waters of Vietnam. My brother and his wife arranged to meet me in the city for a departure party. I called my girlfriend from my college days at Stanford and she agreed to join me. Everything was set for a perfect evening.

I arrived in San Francisco only to hear from my date that she was stuck in Fresno because of dense fog. Sensing my disappointment, she said that I could go out with her roommate. I had never met her roommate and frankly I was a little reluctant to spend one of my last evenings in the states with someone I didn't know. But being a sailor, I needed a date.

That evening I went to her apartment, knocked on the door and was met by a stunningly beautiful, Susan Marie Asbury. Funny how it happens, but the moment I saw her something deep inside told me that this was a special person - something akin, I suppose, to love at first sight.

That evening at dinner her fortune cookie told her that she too was with someone special. Three years later and back from the war, we married.

I have never lost that special feeling and never will.

Ronni and John Hannaman

When I received a call from the Nevada Appeal asking me to write a brief story of how my husband and I were engaged, I thought "this must be a joke."

Then it hit me. Do I even remember the day I became engaged to John Hoy? I am one who lives in the present, conveniently forgets the past and already is working in the future. Well, it was time to brush away those thick cobwebs and try to recall that romantic moment that would alter life as I knew it.

Ah yes, it's coming back to me. John and I were engaged on Valentine's Day. How trite, after all, is that? Well, in the late 70s, getting engaged on Valentine's Day was still the romantic thing to do. Ah, those romantic 70s.

So, on Valentine's Day 1978, John Hoy and I were engaged while dining at a romantic restaurant in La Jolla, Calif. As for the ring, the one presented that evening was beautiful, but it really didn't suit me, so I asked John to take it back, for I had seen one at the Price Club (now Costco) that I liked better and, besides, it was larger for less money.

John took it back to the jeweler saying the engagement was over before it began, since I turned him down.

Got the new ring. Got the man and so married life began later that year. Not much of a story, but that's the way it happened.

Kirk and Tracy Caraway

I first met Tracy in 1993 when we worked at the same newspaper in Tahoe City. I had just moved to the area, and when she found out I was from Kansas, she told me most of her family was from there. I was immediately taken in by her beautiful red hair and blues eyes. But it would take five years for us to finally get together and go on a date.

After dating for nine months, I was ready to pop the question. Tracy was planning on leaving on a trip to Ireland with her mother just after her birthday. So I planned a date for her birthday, with dinner out and champagne back at my place.

After dinner, I told her I had a present for her, and handed her a box with a diamond ring. I was so choked up I couldn't talk. She had to ask me if this ring meant what she thought it did. I think I finally coughed out the words, I'm not sure.

It was a very lonely two weeks while she was away, but it was all made better by the fact that we would have a lifetime to spend together. And now our daughter Mira has those same blue eyes I fell in love with all those years ago.

Anne and Matt Hansen

I met my husband, Matt, on a Friday evening in June 1984. When I think back at it, I'm a little amazed that we "found" each other ... I call it a series of "fortunate" events.

As a young, single professional in Reno who did not grow up in the area, it was not that easy to meet like-minded gentlemen. I was a photojournalist covering, among other things, high school sports, and had become friends with a young woman who coached volleyball at a local school. As we were both single, we found ourselves at a local restaurant for dinner and then decided to have a drink in the bar, where a band was playing.

When a tall, handsome guy waved at her from across the room, she waved back and he came over to say hello. It turned out that they had attended elementary school together in Reno, and they had a nice conversation. He asked her to dance, but since she's shy, she declined and he then asked me.

At the evening's end, he asked what our plans were for the weekend, and we replied that we were going to the beach at Tahoe. He asked "what beach?"

Then said he might meet us there. We laughed afterward and assumed it was just a line.

But there he was the next afternoon, sailing a small boat up to the beach and meeting us for volleyball, boating and swimming ... the end of a perfect weekend, and the beginning of a wonderful life together. Now, with 22 years of marriage and a fine son to show for it, he's still my favorite dance partner and beach buddy.

Mary and Ed Pierczynski

At the time I met my husband, I was working in Minneapolis as base manager of flight attendants for Republic (now Northwest) airlines. My husband was a physician here in Carson. Mutual friends wanted to introduce us.

He did not want to have an "arranged date" and I wasn't wild about meeting a man from Carson City, hundreds of miles from Minneapolis.

However, we finally met. He proposed to me on our second date. However, he tells the story that I proposed to him first. That is not true. He sent me flowers almost every day for weeks after the proposal in order to convince me he was a "good deal." My boss in the airline called me and said he heard my office looked like a funeral home with flowers everywhere.

We finally got married 22 years ago. So, that's my story and I am sticking to it.


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