Your Turn

We want to hear from you — good, bad, just not ugly. Please share thoughts, insights, discrepancies, recollections — and how’s your Tom’s Trivia win-loss percentage coming? Post to our website at, email me at, or send by regular mail to UConn Magazine Letters, 34 N. Eagleville Rd., Storrs, CT 06268-3144.

Here’s a sampling of feedback from our last issue. Skip to the love stories

the cover the 2022 spring issue of UConn Magazine

He’s fantastic, easy to talk to, understanding, courteous, and a great professor x3 — including the current semester. Would recommend his course “The Black Atlantic.”


I’ve been fascinated by trees for many years so found this very interesting.

Carole Noble, via our website

LaShawnda, I am so very proud of you! I was your middle school teacher at King Middle School. May God continue to keep and bless you abundantly.

Victoria Weaver aka Ms. Weaver, via our website

Thank you for sharing your story LaShawnda. I love this. I have never been a horse person, always more of a dog person. I never quite understood why people were so into horses. But you made me get it. That emotional connection with an animal is priceless. Thanks for all you are doing to help others get it, too!

Dave Dickson, via our website

Wonderful work, LaShawnda. Please continue your journey and uplifting communication.

Krish Naraine, via our website

Greetings. Surprised to read that 31% of this year’s engineering students are women. During my time, we had only two!

William S. Sanstrom ’55 (ENG), commenting on “Engineering Her Best Self”

I’m glad to have seen this article. My husband and I drove past this mural the other day and couldn’t identify Ella Grasso. We aren’t from Connecticut! Beautiful work.

Heather Wolfe, via our website

HuskyTHON 2022 raises an incredible $1,340,670.68

@UConn Thank you, Huskies! HuskyTHON 2022 raised an incredible $1,340,670.68 to benefit the kids at @connecticutchildrens

It became pretty clear within the first few days of sharing “An Epic UConn Love Story” back in February that we would need to publish a follow-up of some kind. The story of the eight UConn couples whose love and friendship have survived three decades resonated with readers — the magazine inbox quickly filled with messages from alumni detailing their own romances that took root during their time as Huskies. As one of my final projects before heading off to grad school, I was tasked with compiling these stories to share in our summer issue. Though lacking an epic UConn love story of my own, I excitedly read over each submission in awe of the relationships that originated in such familiar sites on the campus I’ve attended these past four years.

Some of the stories hold uncanny similarities — like Susan and Kevin Coyne who had their first date on the same night, at the same campus bar, as Joshua and Christine Hawks-Ladds. Others, like David and Kimberly Thomas and Marcia Potterton Eaton, shared with us tales of young love that grew into an incredible family legacy of Huskies. Others recall a search for community and sense of belonging which, along the way, led them to their future spouses.

Meeting parents on the first date, staircase smooches, and Daily Campus deliveries are just a selection of the moments that contributed to the relationships detailed below. Some span a few years. Others seven decades. Yet all are characterized by a sense of appreciation for the experiences at UConn that brought them together. There are undoubtedly countless UConn love stories out there and many more in the making; the ones below are just a glimpse into the beautiful relationships that found their start by bleeding blue. Please keep sharing by posting on the comments here. —Maria Mantas '22 (CLAS)

Mosiac of couples who found their love story at UConn

We heard from so many of you who answered our call to reveal your own ­UConn love stories. Whether together for 2 or 62 (!) years, still in Storrs or on the other side of the planet, what we loved most were the photos you shared.

Richard Huntington ’06 (CLAS) and Stephanie Huntington ’06 (CLAS)

My wife and I met at UConn but neither of us remembers how. My nickname amongst her friends was “The Ladybug” because I was dressed in a female ladybug costume nowhere near Halloween. Years later we connected on Facebook over our love of UConn athletics. We still don’t know how we were Facebook friends or where we met — but remember that she would not date me. We talked for months, until I bet her if UConn won the championship that year, she would go with me to the parade. And then Cardiac Kemba happened. It was fate! Our first two dates were the spring football game and the championship parade.

We were married on campus the summer of 2013, with a cocktail hour in the Husky Heritage Museum. The next summer we had our first child, whom we aptly named “Rip.” Two years later we had our second boy, whom we named “Cal.” She wouldn’t let me name him Calhoun! —Richard Huntington

Richard Huntington and wife in wedding outfits by UConn's Jonathan statue

Richard and Stephanie Huntington’s campus wedding included a cocktail hour in the Husky Heritage Museum

Huntington couple kiss in Husky Heritage Sports Museum
Richard Huntington and wife in wedding outfits walk their dog, Cal

Leslie Orndorff Fravel ’70 and Richard Fravel ’68

Our love story began in 1967 and continues to this day. We met on the stairs in the back hall of Sig Ep. I was a Kappa pledge living in Stowe D and I’d brought my pet rabbit to show a friend, who introduced us. Like all of you, UConn was the setting for our story, and we are eternally grateful. Husky pride and gratitude. —Leslie Orndorff Fravel

Leslie Orndorff Fravel ’70 and Richard Fravel ’68

Robert Lindquist ’72 (CLAS) and Ann Lindquist ’73 (Home Ec)

I was a sophomore and Ann was a freshman when we met on Sept. 17, 1969, the third day of classes, at a Kingston House shoot. Thousands of times, I have thanked Rick S., the shoot organizer, for inviting the Crandall C Girls Dorm that night. We had so many great times on campus: Kingston House parties; skating on the ice rink; basketball and football games; movies at the College Theater (“Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid” was a favorite); concerts at Jorgensen (“The 5th Dimension” headlining in 1970 or ’71 — tickets cost $5); early morning runs where we met halfway and then ran around the farm — she always brought along apple chunks or carrots and the horses learned to run to the fence to meet us; the year that Phil S. and I delivered the Daily Campus paper and she met me at the Crandall C door as I dropped off the papers and collected a kiss; me as a backseat driver as she learned to drive her roommate’s standard transmission car in preparation for a spring break trip to Florida; and so many other memories. We just celebrated our 49th anniversary, have three great kids, and 6 grandkids. It’s been a fabulous life, with much more to come — and it all started at UConn in 1969. —Robert Lindquist

a young Robert Lindquist ’72 and Ann Lindquist ’73

The Lindquists then and now

Robert Lindquist ’72 and Ann Lindquist ’73
Bryan and Alice Pollard

Bryan Pollard ’85 (CLAS) and Alice (Melville) Pollard ’83

The Pollards, stand in front of the Jonathan statue at storrs campus

The Pollards, forever in UConn Blue

Bryan Pollard ’85 (CLAS) and Alice (Melville) Pollard ’83 (CLAS) were undergraduates when they first met in the Wilbur Cross Library, at a reception for recipients of a scholarship program coordinated by Dr. H. Fred Simons. A mutual friend thought perhaps the pair could carpool from their homes in Southeastern Connecticut to their summer jobs in New Haven and suggested they connect. Bryan and Alice did end up carpooling that summer and it turned out they had a lot in common. They continued to commute together to various events that were part of the scholarship program, and their relationship blossomed as they worked towards their degrees.

Today, the Pollards’ love for one another is still going strong — and so is their shared love for UConn. The people, the place, and the academics are among the many things they love about their alma mater. Inspired by their experience in the scholarship program, they established The Bryan K. and Alice M. Pollard Scholarship, which supports scholarships for underrepresented students and students of color in political science and STEM fields as well as mentoring and networking programs in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Bryan says he knew, when he laid eyes on Alice across the Wilbur Cross Library, that their relationship was destined to be something special. And now, thanks to their scholarship program, future UConn students can be a part of their story as well.

Bryan says he knew, when he laid eyes on Alice across the Wilbur Cross Library, that their relationship was destined to be something special. And now, thanks to their scholarship program, future UConn students can be a part of their story as well.

Support The Bryan K. and Alice M. Pollard Scholarship.

To learn more about the Pollards and The Bryan K. and Alice M. Pollard Scholarship, read “It Started in the Wilbur Cross Library: Couple Who Met at UConn Loves to Give Back.”

Phyllis (Bicknell) Caroll ’50 (CLAS) and Dave Caroll ’52 (ENG)

Phyllis Caroll ’50 (CLAS) and Dave Caroll ’52 (ENG)

I just finished reading “UConn's Greatest Love Story” including the “please share” at the end of the last photo caption. That inspired me to send our own UConn love story. This June 21st we will have been happily married for 70 years. That is probably more years than any of you reading this has been alive. So let your eight couples know that the best is yet to come!

In 1948 I was Phyllis Bicknell from Meriden, Connecticut, a junior majoring in chemistry. My husband David Carroll from North Haven, Connecticut, was an engineering major who had spent his first two UConn years at the Fort Trumbull branch (newly acquired to handle the great influx of returning WWII servicemen) and had just started his junior year on main campus. We first met on Friday, Oct. 15. The next day at the football game I went to pet Jonathan at halftime (I knew his handler), when I saw Dave leaping down from the stands heading my way. To shorten the story he rode me back home to Sprague Hall on his bike’s crossbar (undergrads were not allowed cars in those days), and we have been together ever since — but not without a problem. Dave spent so much of his time at Sprague Hall, his studies suffered and he was told he could not stay in engineering. But that was his calling! So we made the difficult decision that I would finish my degree, while he would drop out and attend night school at Yale to bring his courses up to UConn's standards. Then once I had left school, he would return and finish his engineering degree. Hence if you check our degrees, you will find mine awarded in 1950 (a BA in chemistry) and Dave’s in 1952 (a BS in civil engineering). We were married the following weekend so have had a long and very happy life, travel widely, had two children, five grandchildren and as of now, one great grand. —Phyllis Carroll

David and Connie (Decker) Mulcahy ’50

Dave and Connie met on a blind date in January of 1956, (at 1-C), were engaged in June, and married on July 21, 1956 in Madison, Connecticut. Dave returned to UConn after serving in Korea to work on his masters. They moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where Dave became a high school English teacher and tennis coach. Connie started working full time at Nova University School when their daughter and son entered high school. They were married for 57 years. Dave passed away in October of 2013. —Connie Mulcahy

a young David ’50 and Connie Mulcahy (ne) Decker ’50
David ’50 and Connie Mulcahy (ne) Decker ’50

Connie and Dave at the Senior Spring Formal 1956 and, 50 years later, they returned to campus for pictures in front of Mirror Lake.

Elaine and Tom Duffany

My husband and I met at UConn in the Spring of 1963. I was living in a sorority (Pi Beta Phi) and we were having a Sadie Hawkins Dance soon. We girls had to ask a guy to be our date. I had not asked anyone yet. My friends convinced me to ask Tom. I had met him at the Waterbury Branch of UConn in my freshman year but we had not dated.

My friends and I were standing and talking together in the Student Union at Storrs when Tom walked by and recognized me. We said hello and he went on walking. My friends said, “Who was that, why don’t you ask him to the dance?” So I did. We had a good time and started dating. We had a lot in common. Both of us had recently lost our dads and both had four siblings. He lived in Thomaston and I in Waterbury. We dated quite a bit after that.

In January of 1964 we became engaged and were married on Aug. 1, 1964. I had introduced my roommate to my brother, both graduates from UConn and they ended up getting married also in July of 1964! —Elaine Duffany

Elaine and Tom Duffany

We returned to Storrs in 2012 with our daughter to watch the UConn women play basketball. She took this photo in the exact spot where my husband and I had met. We have been married for 57 years and we still love watching the women and men play basketball.

Lauren Todd ’14 (CLAS) and Mick ’15 (CLAS)

Lauren Todd ’14 (CLAS) and M. Mick Powell ’15 (CLAS)

We met while participating in an alternative spring break hosted by Community Outreach and the Rainbow Center in 2012. The focus was on gender & sexuality in Connecticut and Massachusetts. It was my first year at UConn as a transfer student and Mick was a first-year student so we were both seeking a LGBTQ+ community & friends.

We began dating soon after. We have had many challenges being in an interracial lesbian relationship, but we have had even more joys.

I was a Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies (WGSS) and Spanish double major and Mick was a WGSS and Africana Studies double major. Today, Mick is an assistant professor in residence in the WGSS program at UConn and I am an adjunct instructor in WGSS. We are both now at the Stamford campus, but taught at Storrs for a few years. And we just celebrated 10 years together! —Lauren Todd

Lauren Todd ’14 (CLAS) and Mick ’15 (CLAS) behinc rainbow wall of flowers
Lauren Todd ’14 (CLAS) and Mick ’15 (CLAS) wedding photo

Lauren and Mick over the past decade

Peter Sikes and Andrea Tomczyk / Bill (William) Sikes and Christine Zehalka, all early ’80s

a young Peter Sikes and Andrea Tomczyk

I have a love story that maybe is not epic, but it is sweet. My two brothers and I attended UConn Storrs at the same/overlapping time, graduating from approximately 1980-83. While there, my brother Bill Sikes met Andrea Tomczyk, dated her briefly and stayed friends with her. Bill introduced my brother Peter Sikes to Andrea and they started dating, later married, and are still married. My brother Bill met Christine Zehalka, whom he married, and they are still married also. We were all friends at UConn and still are friends today. —Mary Beth Sikes Wetmore

Peter Sikes with Andrea Tomczyk

Peter Sikes and Andrea Tomczyk then and now, and now with their sons Tom and Gregg.

Peter Sikes with Andrea Tomczyk and their sons, Tom and Gregg.

And my other brother Bill (William) Sikes and Christine Zehalka and their clan: On the soccer field the year the men won the NCAA championship; Bill and Chris today; then Bill and Chris with their daughters and husbands; their granddaughters Lila & Caroline; and lastly, me with Andrea!

Bill (William) Sikes and Christine Zehalka onthe soccer field the year the men won the NCAA championship (early 1980’s)
Bill and Chris today
Bill & Chris with their daughters and husbands
granddaughters Lila & Caroline
Andrea Tomczyk with brother Peter’s wife Andrea

Kevin Collins ’81 MFA and Kathleen O’Brien ’81 MFA / Brant Pope ’81 MA and Barbara McConnell ’80 MA

Great story! I can add another. There were four of us who were graduate students in the School of Fine Arts acting program between 1978 and 1981 (Kevin Collins and Kathleen O’Brien, Brant Pope and Barbara McConnell). We not only shared the same classes and stage, we also shared the same house (first in Willimantic, then in Mansfield). And yes, we married within a few years of graduating — and both pairs are still together over 40 years later.

Not only that, my wife and I worked together (high school teachers) and Brant and Barbara worked together at various collegiate theater departments. We all came from different places (me — Boston, Kate — Rochester, New York, Brant — Minnesota, Barbara — New Jersey) and we all ended up in theater education. Brant and Barbara were both Theater professors at several colleges and recently Brant retired as chair of the Department of Theater and Dance at the University of Texas in Austin, and Barbara (also retired) was a professor of Costume Design there. Kate and I taught English and Fine Arts at the secondary level. I recently retired as principal of St. Thomas Aquinas High in Dover, New Hampshire; Kate is still there, serving as Chair of the English/Fine Arts Department. —Kevin Collins

cover of a UConn theater program: Kate and I did a two-person theater performance as part of our M.F.A. thesis.

UConn theater program: Kevin and Kathleen did a two-person theater performance as part of their M.F.A. thesis.

Brant & Barbara’s wedding, Kevin on right

Brant & Barbara’s wedding, Kevin on right.

Kevin Collins and Kathleen O’Brien / Brant Pope & Barbara McConnell

Kevin Collins, Kathleen O’Brien, Barbara McConnell, and Brant Pope.

Bob Dana ’63 (PHAR) and Claire Dana ’63 (CLAS)

What a great story. Congratulations and best wishes to these couples. My time at McConaughy predates these folks, it was all-male in 1959 when I lived there. I was fortunate that my girlfriend at the time (we were high school sweethearts) moved back to Connecticut and UConn in time for our second semester as freshmen. We were married in September 1963, three months after graduation and have been together ever since. Although we now live in upstate New York, we still follow our Huskies sports teams, through good times and not so good! Go Huskies! —Bob Dana

a young Bob Dana and wife

The Danas then and now

Bob Dana and wife

Allison Chau ’05 (CLAS) and Xuan Chau ’01 (CLAS)

We met through our involvement at the Asian American Cultural Center, but it was a late night talk at Homer Babbidge that changed our course. Here we are: 20 years and 3 boisterous boys later and still proud Huskies!

Allison '05 (CLAS) and Xuan '01 (CLAS) and family pose in hartford
Allison and Xuan's son poses with jonathan, UConn'smascot

The Chau family — and Jonathan

Gae Hill ’82 and Kirk Hill ’82

My husband, Kirk and I very much enjoyed the above-mentioned article.

Gae Hill ’82 and Kirk Hill ’82 reveal jerseys that say Together Since 1982

The Hills reveal jerseys that say “Together Since 1982”

We too, met and fell in love while students. We started dating in February of 1979 as sophomores. Kirk asked me out while we were attending a CRU campus ministry meeting. We were starstruck from the very first moment we connected! 🙂

Our first date? A UConn vs. URI basketball game held at The Hartford Civic Center on Feb. 9, 1979. Since home games were held off campus back then, student buses were provided for the faithful hordes of Husky fans. The catch for us was that the return trip would not happen until several hours after the game was over; close to midnight. Since bar hopping on our first date was not what either of us wanted to do, my dear date had his dad pick us up and bring us to their Wethersfield home for a night of games and hot chocolate. Imagine meeting your date's parents on the first encounter! Fortunately, my escort had the foresight to arrange a double date with another couple, taking a little heat out of the awkward moments I felt when meeting his parents.

It honestly was fireworks from the first date, but we didn't disclose that to the other for some time. Kirk continued to pursue me with lots of other fun and creative date nights, including a hysterical performance by David Letterman — this was long before he was a household name! We knew within a very short time, we were destined for the other.

We were engaged our senior year and married in September of 1982, just a few months after graduation. (We wanted an earlier date than that, but my parents were insistent Kirk have viable employment first! You may not know this, but 1982 was a terrible year economically and very few graduates were walking away with an offer in hand.)

Well, here we are: 40 years, 3 adult kids, and one grandchild later, more in love than ever. Kirk and I have been, and continue to be, best friends and are super grateful we have each other.
We were relocated from Newington, Connecticut, in 1989 to Indianapolis, Indiana, where we still reside.

Fun facts:

  • We have attended every UConn vs. IU football game held in Bloomington
  • We have attended every basketball game the boys have played in Indiana
  • We were present to see the Lady Huskies win their national championship against Syracuse in 2016

So, that's our story of love, marriage and UConn, in a nutshell. Thanks for taking up such a fun topic! —Gae Hill

Susan Coyne ’84 and Kevin Coyne ’86

What a wonderful story and life these couples have shared. UConn is such a wonderful place. We have something in common with one of the couples. I was ’84, my husband Kevin was ’86. We met at Wheeler B dorm, where I lived and he worked in the kitchen since he lived in a fraternity and that is how they ate, by working at the dorms. Our first date was at Huskies in 1986 on Valentine’s Day — just like Joshua and Christine Hawks-Ladds! Same exact night. We’ve been married 30 years. —Susan Coyne

Susan Coyne ’84 and Kevin Coyne ’86

Robin Scrivener ’87 (BUS) and Alex Glenn ’87 (CLAS),’90 JD

To add to the McConaughy couples: Robin Scrivener ’87 (BUS) and Alex Glenn ’87 (CLAS), JD ’90. Married 30 years. —Robin Scrivener

Robin Scrivener ’87 and Alex Glenn ’87, JD ’90 when they were in college

Robin and Alex then and now

Robin Scrivener ’87 and Alex Glenn ’87, JD ’90

James Altemus ’97 (BUS) and Aimee Altemus ’97 (CLAS)

I remember exactly when I met my future wife: RA orientation up at Hilltop before the Fall ’96 semester. We stayed in touch after graduating the following spring, got together in 2001, and were married in 2005. Almost 17 years — and two kids — later, she is still my best friend and partner in crime. We have a few years before we catch up to where these couples are, but we will! —James Altemus

James and Aimee still bleeding blue

Christine (Barile) Melita ’10 (ED), ’11 MS, ’16 Sixth Year and Jason Melita ’11 (BUS)

Christine (Barile) Melita and Jason Melita met in 2008 at a fraternity party, but didn’t “officially” start dating until 2009. Married in 2016 and now a family of four, the Melitas are already passing down their Husky pride to daughters Claire and Chloe.

a young Christine (Barile) Melita ’10 (NEAG), ’11 MS, ’16 Sixth Year and Jason Melita ’11 (BUS)
Christine (Barile) Melita ’10 (NEAG), ’11 MS, ’16 Sixth Year and Jason Melita ’11 (BUS) getting married
Christine (Barile) Melita ’10 (NEAG), ’11 MS, ’16 Sixth Year and Jason Melita ’11 (BUS) and son

The Melitas through the years

Emily (Volz) Lupi ’10 (CLAS) and Ken Lupi ’09 (PHAR) ’11 Pharm.D.

Emily (Volz) Lupi and Ken Lupi met in Shippee Hall in 2006, where he was an RA and she was a resident. The pair started dating in Fall of 2007 and have been together ever since. Now married for six years, the couple are excited to watch their son, Harrison, become a big brother this summer.

Emily (Volz) Lupi ’10 (CLAS) and Ken Lupi ’09 (PHARM) ’11 Pharm.D

The Lupis then and later

Emily (Volz) Lupi ’10 (CLAS) and Ken Lupi ’09 (PHARM) ’11 Pharm.D

Jeff Endicott Pharm.D. ’10 (PHAR), ’12 Pharm.D. and Kami Escajeda ’10 (NUR)

Jeff Endicott and Kami Escajeda’s love story didn’t involve romance right from the start; the pair first crossed paths in Shippee in 2006, marking the beginning of a close friendship. It wasn’t until two years later that the best friends began dating — and it’s been true love ever since. The two were married in 2014 and are expecting their second child.

Jeff Endicott and Kami Escajeda

Kent Freshour ’74 (BUS) and Beth Freshour ’74 (BUS)

We read with interest your story about the couples who married after meeting at UConn. My wife Beth and I met in the first couple of weeks of our freshman year in 1970. We both lived in “The Jungle” for the duration of our undergraduate studies and married in September of 1974. We’ve now been married for almost 48 years. —Kent & Beth Freshour

Kent & Beth Freshour in newspaper clipping
a young Kent & Beth Freshour
Kent & Beth Freshour

The Freshours then and then and now

Jill Alsgaard ’20 MS and Trung Le ’13 (NUR)

Jill Alsgaard and her husband, Trung Le, met while working in the Intensive Care Unit at UConn Health’s John Dempsey Hospital and were married in 2016. They received special permission from the School of Nursing to walk across the stage together, rather than individually, at commencement this year. Alsgaard graduated from the Post-Master’s Acute Care Nurse Practitioner certificate program, while Le received his degree from the Master of Science Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner program.

Alsgaard and Le have six children, some from previous marriages. Their youngest son is 6 years old, and their oldest, Le’s daughter, will be graduating from UConn’s School of Engineering next year. Learn more about their journey together on UConn Today: “Husband and Wife Nurses to Walk the School of Nursing Commencement Stage Together.”

Jill Alsgaard and her husband, Trung Le in nursing gear
Jill Alsgaard and her husband, Trung Le, along with their children
Jill and Trung at work and with three of their six children

Glenn Cassis ’73 (CLAS), ’74 MFA and Glynis (Smith) Cassis ’74 (CLAS), ’91 MSW

It was a weekend psychology department study during their undergraduate years that first brought Glenn Cassis and Glynis (Smith) Cassis together. Fast forward to the present, and the proud Huskies are happily married, share two children and three grandchildren, and are still active in the UConn Alumni community – Glenn is co-chair of the UConn African American Alumni Council. After successful careers (Glenn in education and state government and Glynis in social work), the couple is enjoying retirement and will be celebrating 48 years of marriage in August. —Glenn Cassis

Glenn Cassis ’73 (CLAS), ’74 MFA and Glynis (Smith) Cassis ’74 (CLAS), ’91 MSW

Jordan Wisniewski '19 (PHAR) and Pratibha Wisniewski '19 (PHAR)

Jordan and I met in pharmacy school and started dating our P2 year after dancing together at the annual Pharmacy Formal five years ago! We’ve traveled the world together, completed our residencies, and now work at Yale New Haven and VA Connecticut! We are blessed to have such supportive families and friends, and were able to celebrate with them at our wedding on October 24, 2021! —Pratibha Wisniewski

Jordan Wisniewski '19 (PHARM) and Pratibha Wisniewski '19 (PHARM) celebrate wedding
Jordan Wisniewski '19 (PHARM) and Pratibha Wisniewski '19 (PHARM) celebrate wedding
Jordan Wisniewski '19 (PHARM) and Pratibha Wisniewski '19 (PHARM) in matching pajamas

The Wisniewskis double up wedding celebrations and pajamas

David Mark Thomas ’80 (CLAS) and Kimberly Edwards Thomas ’80 (CLAS)

David and Kimberly met during the spring in 1977 at UConn. David was an Urban Studies major with a minor in Political Science and a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity. Kimberly was in the School of Home Economics and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

David first saw Kimberly outside of the Arjona Building. As an elective they both took a jogging class at the gymnasium where they ended up meeting.

David also was a member of the Voices of Freedom Gospel Choir under the leadership and founder, the late Lorraine Williams Bailey. David also traveled with the choir off campus including trips to colleges and churches throughout the state, abroad and sang a soloist on the choir’s first gospel album “On our Way.” Most of the choir’s concerts were held at the Von Der Mehden Recital Hall or at the Congregational Church on the UConn campus. (David also attended and sang in May 2022 at the 50-year anniversary of the Voice of Freedom held at Von der Mehden Recital Hall under the leadership of Dr. Lisa Clayton. During the celebration, the University honored the late Lorraine Williams Bailey by naming the Von Der Mehden Stage in her honor.)

As Kimberly and David’s relationship began to grow, it was evident that it was their faith that was the common denominator that would confirm their love for one another. Two years after graduation they were married on Sept. 11, 1982 and will celebrate their 40th anniversary this year.

After UConn Kimberly decided to go into office management where she has held several positions at Beiersdorf, IBM, Bayer, Bristol Meyers Squibb, and now at Yale New Haven Hospital where she is the Office Coordinator for Spiritual Care. David has held several positions as an insurance administrator at the Travelers Insurance Company, Peerless Insurance, and Liberty Mutual and for the last 13 years has been employed by the Children’s Community Programs of Connecticut as a Matching Coordinator for Therapeutic Foster Care Children in Connecticut. He also has been an Associate Pastor at Kingdom Life Christian Church in Milford, Connecticut, for over 15 years.

The couple has three adult sons: Jason, Jordon, and Joshua Thomas. All three graduated from UConn and completed their master’s degrees. Jason married a fellow Husky, too!

Jason Thomas graduated in 2008 with a BA in music at UConn. He completed his Master’s in Education at the University of Bridgeport in 2010 in addition to completing his 6TH Year Degree in Educational Leadership at Quinnipiac University in 2016. Jason is the Choral Director for Westport Public Schools. Jason married Melanie Rodriguez on July 21, of 2012. Melanie graduated from the Neag School of Education in 2011 and received her Master’s in Curriculum and Instructions at UConn in 2012. This fall Melanie will begin a new job as the assistant principal in one of the New Haven schools. Jason and Melanie have two children, Jeremiah Alexander, age 5, and Oliva Grace, 4 months old — future Huskies.

Jordon Thomas graduated in 2010 with a major in biology at UConn and a Master’s in Education at the University of Bridgeport in 2011. Jordon taught science at a private school in Norwalk. He is currently employed at Technolutions in New Haven as a Learning Experience Designer, designing curriculums for colleges and universities using the SLATE software.

Joshua Thomas graduated in 2014 magna cum laude from the Honors program at UConn. In his junior year he was crowned Homecoming King and Mr. Black UConn. After graduation Joshua worked as a staffer under Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut and Sen. Tammy Duckworth of Illinois in Washington, D.C. In 2021 Joshua completed his Master’s degree in Defense and Strategic Studies at Navy Yard College in Washington, D.C. He is currently working as a policy advisor at the House of Representatives for the Committee of Homeland Security in Washington, D.C.

A true family of Huskies! Thank you for allowing us to share our love story and family history. —David and Kimberly Thomas

a young David Mark Thomas ’80 (CLAS) and Kimberly Edwards Thomas ’80 (CLAS)
David Mark Thomas ’80 (CLAS) and Kimberly Edwards Thomas ’80 (CLAS)
David Mark Thomas ’80 (CLAS) and Kimberly Edwards Thomas ’80 (CLAS) with family

David and Kimberly Thomas then and now, and with the family

Didem Tezgin ’15 (CLAS), ’17 MS, and Kemal Tezgin ’21 Ph.D.

Didem Tezgin and Kemal Tezgin pose under veranda during wedding

The Tezgin’s wedding in Turkey

We met when I was tabling at the Involvement Fair in 2014. Our relationship continued to grow on the WRTD bus, where we ran into one another at the bus stop at spontaneous times. Afterward, we served on the board of the Turkish Student Association together, where sometimes we were the only ones present in the meetings. In 2016, when Kemal was about to move to Virginia as a visiting researcher, we of course started dating! After just five months, our long-distance relationship ended in a proposal at the “Rocky” Steps at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. We got married in 2018 in Turkey and traveled to many cities including Warsaw, Lisbon, Rome, and Los Angeles together. Our life together has been an exciting and unique journey, and we can't wait for our new episodes post-Ph.D.! —Didem Tezgin

George and Barbara Potterton, ’35

I loved reading the article on UConn Love Stories, and decided to add one more.

My mom and dad (George and Barbara Potterton ’35) met at UConn, well actually, at the Connecticut Agricultural College. Dad was the head of the Student Senate, and Mom was head of the Women’s Student Government, and therefore secretary of the Student Senate — that is where they met. It was an interesting time for them, and for the other students, as the college became the University of Connecticut. The senate decided on the moniker UConn (Yukon), and the husky as a mascot. Dad went to the western part of Connecticut and literally carried back the first husky. They named him Jonathan after the Governor, Jonathan Trumbull. (Dad actually conducted the burial service for the first Jonathan after he was hit and killed by a car).

After they graduated, they married in 1938, and lived and raised their family in Connecticut. They remained active in the Alumni Association, especially their class, and in 1977 received the Outstanding Alumni Award. Dad passed away in 1997 at 84, and Mom lived until she was 103. They were married almost 60 years!

Their three children all graduated from UConn and my two children did also. Quite a legacy!!

Your article bought to mind many memories. Thank you. —Marcia Potterton Eaton

George and Barbara Potterton, '35

George and Barbara Potterton, married 60 years!

Stasia Buss and Bill Buss

I just read the article about the couples from The Jungle and wanted to share our story with you. I wrote this several years back for a Memoir Class that I took with CLIR (Continued Learning in Retirement) at the Depot Campus. We are both retired now, and I enjoy writing my memoirs. —Stasia Buss


Meeting Bill
Bobby and I had been thrown together as roommates freshman year 1967 at UConn after both of our original roommates pledged sororities. She was an attractive, tall, lanky girl with long dark hair that framed her face. Her soft voice was tinged with a Boston accent. She was a natural magnet for men. Walking back to the dorm one afternoon, I spotted her walking in the distance past Swan Lake with a tall, slender guy, one of several she was dating. Both raised their hands in a wave which I answered.

Later that evening Bobby was on the phone with one of her men. She covered the mouthpiece and asked “Stasia do you have a date on Saturday?”

“No, but I have desk duty.”

“Well, Bill asked me out, but I already have a date with Dick. He really likes your name and wants to know if you would go to a house party with him on Saturday.”

“Well, I guess I could go, but it would have to be after 8 when my shift at the desk is over.”

I was willing to take Bobby's hand me downs since I had no date that night and prospects did not look good.

Saturday evening came and I went downstairs to take my turn at the desk. I was on from 6 to 8 and was busy ringing the girls to come down as their dates arrived. Time passed quickly and just before I was ready to take off I looked up and saw Butch standing before me. Butch was my hairdresser's son. He was a couple of years older and we had dated once when I was in High School. He was an engineering major at RPI and was in the area and wanted to know if I would go out with him that night. Wow, when it rains it pours, but truth be told, although Butch was a nice guy, he was a typical dorky looking engineer type with crew cut hair, big black glasses, plaid sport shirt embellished with a pocket protector and a little on the chubby side.

“Sorry, Butch, but I have a date tonite.”

“Oh, maybe you could change plans. I'm only here tonite.”

I assured him that would not be possible. One date had been enough and I was looking forward to meeting Bill. A little annoyed Butch finally left, just as Bill arrived. I had never seen him close up and I was pleasantly surprised. He was tall and slender with short brown hair parted on one side, brown eyes, with a great leftover summer tan that was accented by the pale yellow button down shirt he was wearing. Bill had a mole on his left cheek and looked a lot like Roger Moore , a teenage crush of mine. OK, this looked like the better choice.

I grabbed my stuff and off we went. We both lived in the Towers. I was in Wade House and he was in Trumball House just across the quad. The party was well under way when we got there. Girls were allowed upstairs in the men's dorm at any time. The women's dorms were off limits to men at that time, but soon after parietal hours came into affect and the guys could come up to our rooms as well. Alcohol was not allowed downstairs so Bill took me upstairs to his room for a with ginger ale and lime juice. Neither of us were 21, but the room mother did not go upstairs and what went on up there stayed there. I got to meet Bill Antonelli, his roommate and some other friends. After a few drinks we went downstairs to dance and mingle.

Mellowed with cocktails or maybe it was just serendipity but it felt as if we had known each other forever. I fit perfectly in his arms when we danced and our feet moved in unison. Then came the long looks into each other's eyes, followed with swift kisses that felt just right as well. We were meant to be together. I had heard of love at first sight, never thought it would happen to me, but here it was and we both knew it. I knew I was going to marry this man.

Jim, a senior, saw us on the staircase smooching. He came up to Bill and said “Stop, what are you doing?” Stop was Bill’s nickname, shortened from Buss stop, a take on his last name. He could see where this was headed and he was trying to give the underclass man a warning. It went right over our heads. We had fallen for each other badly. Reluctantly the night came to an end, but it was just the beginning of the many years we would spend together.

Stasia Buss and Bill Buss

Stasia and Bill Buss

Karen A. Pagliaro ’80 (NUR) and Eric A. Cope ’79 (CLAS)

So fun to see the article on UConn’s Greatest Love Story! My husband and I met at the West Hartford campus in 1977. He graduated in 1979 and I graduated in 1980. Our youngest son Dr. Ethan Cope graduated from the UConn School of Dental Medicine in 2021 — his third UConn degree. —Karen A. Pagliaro, RN, BSN

Karen A. Pagliaro and Eric A. Cope

Angela Gott Landon ’00 (CLAS) and Bryan Landon

Thank you for sharing this story, especially on Valentine’s Day! I dormed in The Jungle back in 1995. I was eating breakfast in the cafeteria one Saturday morning. I noticed a handsome man grabbing a bagel. I pointed him out to one of my girlfriends. Turns out, she knew him very well — she was actually dating his brother at the time. She introduced us and, as they say, the rest is history. We will celebrate our 20th anniversary this September. We have 3 sons. Our oldest is a freshman at UConn and is having the time of his life — just like his mom and dad did while attending UConn. —Angela Gott Landon

Angela and Bryan in 1999

Angela and Bryan in 1999, their first year dating; in 2021 at the Towers dorms, the first day their oldest son moved onto campus; and a three-generation Husky photo at Family Weekend 2021 with Angela, her son, and her father.

in 2021 at the Towers dorms, the first day their oldest son moved onto campus
a three-generation Husky photo at Family Weekend 2021 with Angela, her son, and her father.
Mary Lou Salerno Kuegler and Kristian Kuegler

Mary Lou Salerno Kuegler ’94 (ED) and Kristian Kuegler ’94 (CLAS, ED)

We actually met in 1987 at Watertown High School, Kris was a senior and I was a junior. We started dating that spring and Kris left to go to UConn to study engineering that fall. I followed, planning to apply to the Neag School of Education in ’88 — and we both ended up graduating from NEAG in 1994. We got married that summer, and have been teaching together for 20 years at the school where we met. We have two children, and our daughter is currently enrolled in NEAG as well! —Mary Lou Salerno Kuegler

The Kueglers and the Marinans

Wendy Morton Marinan ’92 (CLAS) and Christopher Marinan ’91 (CLAS)

UConn is where we met our very best friends, Kristian Kuegler and Mary Lou Salerno (see above). They get all the credit for introducing us to each other, and our friendship has only grown stronger over the years. Mary Lou and Kristian had started dating in high school, and Mary Lou and I were floormates in Middlesex dorms in North Campus. Kristian was living in Northwest, and when Mary Lou would go visit, I occasionally came with her, and through Kristian met Christopher. We recently celebrated our 28th wedding anniversary, and are ever thankful for the lifelong friends we met at UConn! We have two children, and the Kuegler and Marinan families are still close friends 30-plua years later. —Wendy Morton Marinan

The Kueglers and Marinans family

The Kueglers and the Marinans

Ryan Byrd ’93 (BUS) and Tonia (Branch) Byrd ’93 (SFA)

My wife, Tonia Branch at that time, and I met in 1989 at Thumpers, the local off campus nightclub/bar after a brawl with some guys who were not too kind to her. She lived in French – South Campus and I lived in Buckley. After graduation, we continued to date off and on until 1996. I was from Rhode Island and Tonia from Manchester, Connecticut. After that time we parted and went our separate ways — she to Los Angeles and I to Washington, D.C. After 12 years of no contact, I found out she was still single through one of my best friends, and I reached out to her. After long phone conversations she agreed to meet me in Miami after going on a girls trip to Jamaica. Once we reconnected in 2008 it was like seeing my best friend, and it felt like we had never missed a step after all that time. We maintained a long-distance relationship from 2008 to 2014 when we got married in Newport Beach, California. I moved to L.A. in 2016. Now that is a UConn Love Story! —Ryan Byrd

Cynthia (Chapman) Marco and John Marco

My freshman year, in Hollister, I met a friend who brought me to a party in The Jungle. We played a card game called Killer, in a circle of people. One fellow had a very nice wink, and basically we’ve been together ever since. We got married in 1974, and adopted two beautiful children. Wallingford, Connecticut, has been our home. My husband’s name is John Marco, and he’s a regular at the UConn basketball games. —Cynthia (Chapman) Marco

Jill Berquist ’84 and Carl Berquist ’83

I was a freshman living in Buckley and Carl was a junior. Spotting him in the cafeteria sparked a crush. He was shy back then — I started hanging out on his floor near his room, and we soon talked, and became a couple. That year was dancing on the Homecoming float, many dorm parties, date nights at Chucks by the fire, Husky games, four-wheeling up Horsebarn Hill, Rosal’s, Rap’s, Huskies with friends – and still friends today. We are married 33 years, with two daughters, one 22 and one 18 and now a Husky – living in The Jungle! —Jill Berquist


  1. They missed the point . It’s not just about the marriages it’s the friendships and the sense of family within those friendships.

  2. I am so disappointed that every photograph that made it into the magazine is of a heterosexual couple. And I’ve scrolled through all the stories and you have one lesbian couple. How is that possible?!? Where is the LGBTQ community in your love stories? I really expected better representation

    • We couldn’t agree more, Chanda. We had hoped to receive more such stories, too, and are hoping people will add their stories now in these comments! Unfortunately we got Lauren and Mick’s story and photo too late to include it in the print issue photo montage.

  3. My husband Matt Howe (CLAS ‘12) and I (SFA ‘12) met the first weekend of sophomore year, and will have been together 12 years this December. Our favorite ‘date’ was taking long, campus-wide walks at night, from Charter Oak suites, through the fields to Horsebarn Hill, and back through campus. Matt is a researcher and psychiatrist with Brown University, and I am working towards my PhD in Education at URI.

    When I was pregnant with our daughter, the UConn Women’s Basketball team was playing in Houston where we were living at the time. At the end of the game, the team signed a baby onesie that I brought, and we have it framed still in my daughter’s room four years later. She’s a big Huskies fan!

  4. We crossed paths in the full time MBA program on the Storrs campus from January 1995 through December 1995. By the time Chuck started in January, I had already traveled from Jamaica and completed the Fall 1994 semester. We met at an MBA networking event at Chuck’s Steak House on route 32 that January, and although we had classes together, we didn’t become close friends until the summer when we journeyed daily to the West Hartford campus for the summer program. Our UConn love story began that summer, which continued through our May 1996 graduation ceremony. We got engaged at The Altnaveigh Inn in Storrs on my birthday in June 1996, got married at the Storrs Congregational Church on campus in December 1996 during a blizzard, and had our wedding reception at Zenny’s (now Toast). We called it a UConn wedding with all our Grad Student friends! We settled in CT and now have three children who we have frequently brought to campus for basketball games, camps, ice cream, and bike rides over the years. Our eldest daughter Morgan is a 2021 UConn Grad, working and living in Boston, and is enrolled in UConn’s online MBA program for the Fall of 2022. Sydney our second daughter will graduate from UConn in May 2023, and our son Trey will be a freshman on campus in the Fall of 2022. UConn has physically changed a lot over the past 27 years, but it has never stopped feeling like home. We are a UCONN family of 5 Huskies! — Donna-Marie Tennyson

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