The Y: Where Love Lives



Valentines couple
Valentines couple

"Back in 1988 I was in my early 20’s and well into my college career and thought I knew where I was headed with my life. I was working on my college degree in Criminal Justice at ETSU. During the summer I would spend my afternoons working out at the YMCA with a friend. During our workouts, we would have the usual guy conversations which would include some friendly banter back and forth about each other’s obvious physical weaknesses and personalities. I enjoyed these times at the YMCA because the Y really was a social hub where you could count on running into the same friendly faces and enjoy a good workout and chit chat with friends in a great environment.

I remember one particular day in June, just a couple of weeks into summer break, my usual lifting partner and I were at the bench press, which in those days was a squat rack we reconfigured into a bench press setup. In between sets we would often peer out the door into the lobby. We had a direct view to the front desk. On this particular afternoon my partner had just insulted the size of my calves, stating they looked like little twin weenie dogs. As if on cue we heard a ruckus coming up the hallway that sounded like 1,000 yelping puppies. It was actually a litter of day campers led by a female counselor – a pretty day camp counselor I might add. I remarked to my partner that this particular counselor was quite attractive. He wasted no time in telling me I was too ugly to get a date with her. Little did he know I took his insult personally and decided I was going to show him up and get the last laugh.

Shortly after the snide remark from my partner, we finished lifting and he left the YMCA. As soon as he was out of sight I headed for the front desk and asked for the name of the counselor. I was told her name was Christi Anderson. My plan was set in motion. The next day my partner and I met at the YMCA for another workout at our usual time. Towards the end of our workout and right on schedule in walked the day campers with their angelic counselor. As soon as she was in ear shot my friend challenged me to ask her out but was quick to remind me I would be shot down.

Almost instantly and without any thought I yelled “Hello Christi” from inside the weight room. The rest is history; I had a date that same night. To this day I tease her that she fell instantly in love but that it took me a little longer.

I spent the rest of my summer as a volunteer counselor herding day campers at the YMCA and pursuing what I would one day realize as my better half. Christi and I were married one year later in Rockwall. I went to work for the Rockwall Police Department while we both finished our college degrees. The YMCA stayed a big part of our lives. We had two children, Niki and Colton. Both kids stayed busy playing sports through the YMCA. We drifted away from the YMCA as our kids grew older but we have been drawn back to our roots. Christi and I love the new facilities. We are taking full advantage of the weight room, cardio equipment and racquetball court. The renovations have really given the Rockwall community a state of the art facility to enjoy. We highly recommend the Y and who knows, you might even meet an angel."

~ By Keith McKnight


Authored by: YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas