They say the clothes make the man. For Tim Hoag, ’94, it was his shorts that caught the eye of his future wife, Becky Smith, ’94.
“The first time I ever saw Tim, we were at the same house and I asked a friend ‘who’s the guy in the shorts?’ He always wore shorts no matter how cold, so I guess that’s why he stood out,” Becky said. “Tim was a fun guy to hang out with, he was somebody new, and we just really got along. But our romance didn’t take off until soon after we graduated.”
Tim was preparing to serve with the Peace Corps in West Mali, Africa, when Becky called him in the summer of 1994. “After graduation I went home and called Tim. I told him I wanted to see where our relationship could go.”
“Never underestimate a Bona rugger!” Tim quipped.
Becky continued, “He was in shock and didn’t know quite what to do, but he counseled with Fr. Dan Riley.”
After speaking with Fr. Dan, Tim said, “I want to see where this can go with Becky.”
Tim stopped his assignment for the Peace Corps, but still wanted to serve. Fr. Dan set him up with The Franciscan Center in Buffalo.
“He put Tim in Buffalo because I was in Rochester, so Fr. Dan was really instrumental in bringing us together,” Becky explained. “Tim was a student for The Mountain. He grew up with a strong faith. We talk about that a lot – how much that faith and the teachings from Bonaventure inspire us.”
Becky told the story of their engagement: “We graduated in May 1994 and really started dating, traveling back and forth between Buffalo and Rochester. By October, Tim asked me to marry him. It will be our 20th anniversary this summer. ”
Although they did not date until after graduation, their experience at St. Bonaventure prepared the Hoags for life together.
“We had two different Bonaventures in a way. We ran in different circles; I had my friends and he was on the rugby team, but we had similar experiences,” said Becky. “I think one of the biggest things we took from St. Bonaventure is our faith – the Franciscanism that we were immersed in.”
Becky cited Fr. Dan’s counseling as the impetus that led to her becoming Catholic a few years after she and Tim were married by Fr. Dan at St. Bonaventure Church in Allegany, N.Y.
Becky concluded, “The amazing thing about Bonaventure is that the relationships we formed there are lasting. I’m still close with all of my house mates. We get together once a month and are always text messaging each other. They feel stronger in their faith now than in college, I think, and they appreciate the seeds that were planted.”
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