Photo By Kelechi Okere

How We Met: Obi Okere

I was a freshman at Rutgers University studying electrical engineering.  Outside of class I was very active in intramural sports and few student clubs on campus.  One of the clubs that I got involved in was called Twese.  It was a club for African natives.  I volunteered as a dancer for an African performance for their annual dinner dance. During rehearsal, I was introduced to Joy.  Joy immediately caught my eye.  She was cute, seemed nice, had a nice body, and was Nigerian just like me.  Joy and I became friends and hung out a couple times throughout college but never really became romantically involved since we were both in relationships with other people.

We lost touch after college, but finally reconnected at a barbecue hosted by a mutual friend of ours.  I’ll never forget. I was already at the barbecue chatting with some friends.  To my surprise Joy walks in and I found myself checking her out from across the yard.  She was looking better than ever.  I walked over to chat with her and we reconnected over old times at Rutgers.  We later started hanging out as good friends talking on the phone almost every night and, before I knew it, we were dating and were in this awesome relationship.

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I always knew that Joy would be the one that I would marry because she is everything that I want in a woman.  In the five years we’ve been together, I couldn’t see myself with anyone else.  I ended up buying an engagement ring without ever knowing how I was going to propose.  I actually hid the ring from her for a month trying to decide on the best way that I would propose.  I wanted to do it in a special way that we can both remember for the rest of our lives.  I decided to propose on Valentine’s day.  On that day, I took her out to the Sea Grill restaurant that overlooks the Rockefeller skating rink.  I was so nervous, but tried my best not to show it.  By the time we finished eating, it was just after midnight, and the skating rink was completely empty and fully illuminated.  I told her that I wanted to go check out the gold statue that overlooks the rink.  While there, I gave her a second Valentine’s Day card where I asked her if she would marry me.  She was completely surprised and immediately cried tears of joy.  I got down on one knee, nervously slid the ring onto her finger, and she said YES!

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