Engaged: Lauren Gormley & Michael Koehler
It was an instant connection for this couple who met on match.com.
Lauren Gormley and Michael Koehler. (handout art from the couple, Baltimore Sun / April 19, 2012)
Wedding date: November 17, 2012
Her story: Lauren Gormley, 29, grew up on the Eastern Shore, outside Ocean City, in the small town of Bivalve, Maryland. Her father, Richard Gormley, is a professor of hotel and restaurant management at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. Her mother, Christine Gormley, is a point of care coordinator for Atlantic General Hospital. Lauren Gormley is an optometrist with Katzen Eye Group.
His story: Michael Koehler, 28, grew up in Catonsville. His father, Peter Koehler, is a module manager at the U.S. Social Security Administration. His mother, Doreen Schweitzer, is a retired IT specialist at SSA. His stepfather, David Schweitzer, is general manager of dining services at Charlestown Retirement Center. Michael Koehler is an editor/producer at VPC, Inc. He is also a musician, and plays guitar, piano and sings in a local band, an acoustic trio, called Gutter Rose.
Their story: Lauren and Michael met on match.com. in 2010.
"We are an internet love story," says Lauren. "I had been out of a relationship for a little while and was looking for something a little bit more serious."
"I decided there weren't too many places to meet people. With my [day] job and stuff, I don't work with too many women. And the only girls I would meet when I was out with my band and playing were either drunk or crazy," says Michael.
They immediately found they had a lot in common.
"We're pretty quirky people," Lauren says.
"One of the things we talked about a lot is that we both were fans of the show 'The Walking Dead.,'" she says. "We had conversations about what we would do for the zombie apocalypse. It was really funny. We both really like music, live music. And we both have dogs."
After a few conversations, the couple had their first date, November 11, 2010, meeting at Starbucks for coffee. Only one problem: Michael didn't tell her that he doesn't drink coffee or tea.
"I don't drink any hot liquids at all," says Michael. " But Lauren was really good at walking me through the steps of picking a tea out.
"If it wasn't love at first sight, it was pretty darn close to it.
"Within the first 10 minutes of talking to her, I knew this was someone I was going to get along with very, very well," he says.
"I would say, as soon as we met and sat down and talked, I was quite certain it was going to be a serious relationship," she agrees.
"What was supposed to be a half hour coffee date turned into a two hour plus pizza date," he says.
The relationship was off and running.
The near miss:The couple knew early on that this was "the" relationship. But, Lauren still wanted to make sure.
"I'm much more the practical one and he's much more the romantic,' says Lauren. " And so I had told him pretty early on that being together for a year was the minimum amount of time to be together before getting engaged." Michael promised he would honor that request.