Last summer, Liz MacNeill '11 and Ford Abrecht '12 (pictured at right) were married, continuing a long-standing tradition. This summer, SM classmates Erin Horgan '08 and Austin Brock '08 are getting married. When they tie the knot, they will be the 27th St. Mark's couple to walk down the aisle together. Austin and Erin will be following in some heartwarming footsteps.
The earliest example of matrimonial Lion love, at least in terms of graduation years, was really a Lion-Phoenix pairing. Arthur Patterson (SM Class of 1962) and Louise Muhlfeld (Southborough School Class of 1976) were wed more than two decades ago. But there have been many others, spanning classes from 1977 through (most recently) 2012.
A number of current and past SM trustees are among the twenty-six (soon to be twenty-seven). The aforementioned Louise Muhlfeld Patterson received the Potter-Miller Prize for her work on the St. Mark's Board a few years ago. Two trustees—Michael Jensen '82 and Diane Kurzontkowski '83—are married to each other. Also among those trustees who have been blessed by Lion Love is Tarah Donoghue Breed '00.
Tarah and her husband, SM classmate Allen Breed, were "just friends" back in their St. Mark's days. At left is a photo of them at their Sixth Form Dance in 2000. A few years after college, they re-met in Washington, D.C. and began dating. "We connected immediately because we shared a sense of intellectual curiosity, adventure, and family – all values we developed at St. Mark's," said Tarah. Here they are, pictured at right with their children, Hunt and George.
There are other St. Mark's couples out there who have yet to take that next step, but they are Lion Love couples in the truest sense. Among these are Megan Giblin '12 and Mark Upton '13 (at left). And so the course of love continues.
Of course, not all St. Mark's love stories require a pair of Lions. There are always alums like Bob, a St. Marker in the early 80s, who reserves time on the School's Gardner Rink every Valentine's Day for a sweetheart skate with his wife. She may not be a St. Marker, but together they too are an exemplar of Lion Love.
And this doesn't even begin to count the numerous SM faculty and staff who married each other after meeting at St. Mark's.
In St. Mark's intentionally small environment, we learn together; we play together; we face challenges together. St. Markers forge life-long friendships, connections, and sometimes even more!
St. Mark's students today continue a more recent tradition of sending "Crush Cans" to each other during Valentine's Week. But even if they don't get one from that special someone, they should not despair. "I'm pretty sure Allen never sent me one back in the day," says Tarah Breed. And look how they ended up. There's always hope.
We'd love to hear your stories of Lion Love! We invite you to share your story here.