University love connection
Christopher Bryan Cooke and Tomeika Latoya Clare met in 2005. She was a third-year student at Northern Caribbean University pursuing a bachelor of science degree in nursing and he was a first-year student at University of Technology (UTech) pursuing a bachelor of arts degree in operations management and marketing.
"I was boarding close to UTech, where my best friend, Tahshiek Francis, and I were roommates. I remember coming home one day from school and seeing Christopher's entire family in the yard. I entered the yard with an apprehensive look on my face and asked them how I could be of assistance, only to find out that he was moving in. So I met the family even before I had the slightest clue that they would be my in-laws."
Weeks passed and the new neighbours hadn't spoken. So one day as he was watching TV she was passing his room, stopped at the door and asked him, "so are you gonna invite me to the movies?" He did, and they became friends.
They spent time going to the movies, to church, cooking, doing laundry and crawling though the back fence to enter Hope Gardens for a quiet evening. Their bond grew stronger.
"On Saturday, July 2, 2011, he took me to dinner and asked for my hand in marriage. I was elated and said yes without even blinking," she recalled.
The wedding was held on December 4, 2011, at Fort Clarence beach in Portmore, St Catherine. The beach was decorated by Hermine Cameron. Officiating minister was Dudley Mullings and the bride's bouquet and corsages were made by Mr Lyons.
Photography for the memorable occasion was done at Hope Botanical Gardens along Hope Road in St Andrew by Morray Jemeison from Mandeville, Manchester. The wedding cake was baked by Kelly-Ann Henzil-Gayle and the reception was by Pollyanna Caterers, Stanton Terrace.