Rick Meuser of Huntington recalls the day he met his future wife, Cathy, at a teen dance.
On May 2, 1975, I was playing guitar with my band, White Fire, at a Burr Road Junior High School dance in Commack. I was a senior at Commack South High School. During our break, a student at Burr Road named Eric Lehmann started talking to us. I noticed a cute girl in the crowd, and he told me her name was Cathy Sullivan. She was in ninth grade.
After the dance, my bandmates and I went to Friendly's restaurant in Commack. Cathy and Eric were there, too, and I asked him to get her phone number for me, which he did.
Our first date was a double-date with one of my bandmates and his girlfriend. We went to the RKO movie theater in Commack, then to Friendly's. My friend and I loved to joke, and we played one on our dates. I stepped away from the table, and he told them that I had a serious coordination problem. The girls were very startled when I came back and suddenly mashed an ice cream cone into my cheek. We all had a good laugh.
Cathy and I continued dating, and I asked her to my senior prom. Our band began playing the club circuit full time, and Cathy would often come see us perform. However, the band's busy schedule made it difficult to maintain a steady relationship, and we dated on and off over the next six years.
Cathy graduated from high school in 1978, and we went to her senior prom together. She got a job and earned an associate degree from Suffolk County Community College in 1980. I left the band in 1981, graduated with a bachelor's from Stony Brook University in 1984 and then headed to St. John's University School of Law.
We missed each other greatly, and were now finally able to begin our relationship again. In 1984, I proposed to Cathy at the 1890s Dining Car in Setauket, a restaurant made up of several old train cars. We married on Aug. 3, 1985, and had our reception at the Holiday Inn in Hauppauge.
I graduated law school in 1987. I'm an entertainment lawyer. Cathy manages our family business, Herrell's Ice Cream, in Huntington. We have two wonderful daughters.
Cathy is a very fun, kindhearted and loyal person. I am blessed to have been able to spend my life with her. She is a wonderful wife and mother to our children. In May, I took her back to Burr Junior High, where we first met 40 years ago, and we had brunch in the cafeteria. We then stopped at the former site of the Friendly's we had gone to after the dance. Eric, our matchmaker, kindly agreed to meet us there.
Cathy and I recently celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary in San Juan, Puerto Rico.