You rose into my life like a promised sunrise, brightening my days with the light in your eyes. I’ve never been so strong. Now I’m where I belong. ~ Maya Angelou
Marcus and Leandra initially met in 2006 at an United Negro College Fund meeting for Historically Black College and University fundraisers. At the time, they were both happily married and working for different universities.
During the meeting, they discovered that they both served as the alumni director and advisor for the pre-alumni council at their respective schools. They developed a professional friendship from that point and ended up working for the same University a few years later.
In 2014, after a divorce and the tragic loss of Marcus’ wife, God saw fit to give them both another opportunity for love. The rest is history!
On New Year’s Eve Marcus surprised Leandra during a dinner with some of their closest friends. They had planned a trip to Asheville, NC to bring in the new year with their friends months ahead, but little did Leandra know, Marcus had another plan brewing.
That night, they all planned to go to a nice restaurant to eat dinner then go out dancing to bring in the new year. Leandra’s best friend even arranged for all of them to travel together in a stretch Hummer limousine. At dinner, when it was time for dessert, Leandra was the last one to be served. She was so busy laughing and talking with her girlfriends that she didn’t even notice that she was the last to be served.
When the waiter came to bring Leandra her dessert, he was holding a covered silver tray and said “I apologize but we are out of the strawberries and champagne that you ordered so the chef made you something special.” It didn’t register to her that something else is going on. Leandra said “that’s okay, I understand,” and then he placed the tray in front of her. When she uncovered the tray, a small box appeared. Leandra immediately covered her face with her hands and began to cry because knew it was a ring.
When Leandra opened the box, she received another surprise because it was the ring she had admired a few weeks earlier with one of her best friends. When she looked up, Marcus was on bended knee in front of her asking her to marry him. She said yes!
Later, Leandra found out that Marcus coordinated with her best friends to have one of them take her to a store to look at rings a few weeks earlier, so he would have a sense of the kind of ring she would like. He had the ring she liked custom made. She also found out that he arranged for the limo and the private VIP area that they all partied in later that night.
Leandra describes Marcus as an extremely thoughtful, considerate and loving man. “He really knows how to woo a woman. It was definitely a night to remember and a great start to a new year and chapter in our lives.” Marcus and Leandra’s clothing looks were inspired by Marcus’s favorite color which is sky blue and Leandra’s general love of fashion. They also wanted to convey the different facets of their individual personalities and personality as a couple.