Brian Lavelle, CCAS BA ’09, and Tanya Holland, CCAS BA ’08
First, he insisted they leave dinner with friends early to ice skate in the National Sculpture Garden. Then he wanted to walk to the reflecting pool on the way to the top of the Lincoln Memorial.
“I was a little annoyed because it was cold, and my feet were sore from the skates, but he insisted,” Tanya remembers.
It wasn’t as if he hadn’t seen the grand statue of the sixteenth president before, Tanya adds, as one of their first dates at GW had been identical to this evening’s outings.
All her exasperation vanished when on their way back down the iconic stairs overlooking their graduation site, the National Mall, Brian dropped to one knee, and asked her to spend the rest of her life with him.
A wedding proposal in the heart of DC seems appropriate for two people with as much GW spirit as Brian and Tanya, who started dating after getting to know each other in GW’s Pep Band. While Tanya would play away on her euphonium, Brian would alternate between the saxophone and his “omnipresent yelly-cone.”
Even when they weren’t playing in the pep band, they went to every men and women’s home basketball game during their four years at GW. They even followed the teams to the A10 and NCAA basketball tournaments.
After graduation, the couple settled in Austin, where Tanya works at the Texas Primary Care Office, while studying for her masters of public affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, and Brian works as a webmaster for Epilepsy.com.
On December 30, 2011, a year after the frigid night Brian proposed, the couple married in Austin. Four of their friends from pep band served in the bridal party.