Despite looming flood waters from the Red Cedar River, the scene at the Rock on Farm Lane on Wednesday afternoon was anything but miserable.
The Rock was painted bright red. Rose petals covered the ground around it.
With the hefty question “Will you marry me?” painted on the landmark behind him, Gerardo Garcia could be seen proposing to his girlfriend, Christian Recéndiz.
“Feb. 10, 2011 was when we first started dating,” Garcia said. “It’s Feb. 21 now, so we’ve been dating for seven years.”
She said yes, and as students going to and from classes honked the horns of their cars and shouted words of congratulations to the couple, the Spartan alumni recounted how they first met at MSU.
“We came in through the CAMP program, which is Migrant Student Services,” Recéndiz said. “We came in through there and that’s how we met through orientation."
"She’s actually the first girl I ever spoke to when I set foot here at MSU,” Garcia said.
Together, the class of 2015 graduates recalled what led them to consider each other as more than just friends.
“We were just really close friends, and then that’s how it started,” Recéndiz said.
“We were the closest of friends,” Garcia added. “It was weird. After one day, the switch just turned on and there were all these feelings inside of me that I had for her.”
The couple is from Austin and the two of them had been planning a trip back to MSU for quite some time, Garcia said.
“We had a trip planned up here and I was like, that’s when I decided, ‘We’re already coming back to MSU,’” Garcia said. “It would be a good way to do it, here on the Rock, which I guess is like a big landmark here at State.”
Garcia decided the visit to the couple’s alma mater would serve as a good place to pop the question.
“I mean, the Rock has a lot of meanings,” Garcia said. “You know, she’s my rock, she’s the person who keeps me grounded. There’s no other way to put it than she’s my rock.”