Radford, Keaster tell how love struck them

Mar 4th, 2009 | By | Category: Personal Features

Abby Jo Moore

Contributor

It started out as a case of mistaken identity. It soon developed into a friendship. And after a magical date on a snowy day off from school, it blossomed into the love of a lifetime.

Sierra Radford, a junior in health communications, first met Blake Keaster, a junior in cell and molecular biology, purely by mistake one day during a class.

In fact, Sierra thought she was talking to someone else when she first met Blake. She had a class with Drew Keaster, Blake’s identical twin, so when she saw Drew’s look-alike sitting in another one of her classes, she went over to say hello. She soon realized her mistake, but it was the start of a wonderful friendship.

Flash forward a couple of months later, and Blake finally gained the nerve to ask Sierra out, inviting her to a dance in Garst cafeteria where a live band was performing. Whether it was the music or the fact that he told her he “was a ladies’ man,” Blake convinced her to come back with him to a friend’s birthday party.

“We went and played in the snow,” Sierra recalled. The next day Missouri State cancelled classes, so they went out to play again, this time just the two of them.

That first snow date happened a little over two years ago, but their relationship has quickly escalated into something lasting.

On July 4, 2008, Blake got on one knee to ask Sierra to marry him. He was “nervous,” though, not because he questioned her response, but because he “didn’t want to drop the ring in the lake,” he said.

“I took her out on the lake at night,” Blake explained.

Sierra had come to visit Blake and their friends in his hometown of Mountain Home, Arkansas. She enjoyed his choice of proposal. “It was almost midnight,” she said. “It was nice because no one else was on the lake.”

Although the proposal was an exciting night for Sierra, a few clues gave away the surprise. “I knew it was coming,” she explained.

She had suspected some kind of plan when Blake continually insisted that she come that specific night to Mountain Home after work, rather than the next morning. Moreover, the fireworks show their friends scheduled at the lake had been called off because Sierra hadn’t arrived, making her yet more aware that plans were revolving around her.

The wedding will take place in Rolla, Missouri, Sierra’s hometown, at the ballroom where she had her high school prom. “I’m in up to my neck planning stuff,” she said.

As far as their families go, Sierra explained that “(Blake’s) mom originally didn’t want him to (marry) until after dental school.” But both families seem to be nothing but excited now that the engagement has taken place. “They’re both good with it, happy about it,” Sierra said.

Why do the two love each other?

“Despite the fact that I’m mad at him…” Sierra started, joking. “He can always make me laugh.

“Sometimes it makes me madder.”.

For Blake, one of his favorite things about Sierra is how “talkative” she is. “It works well because she talks, and I listen,” he explained. Not to mention, she’s “stunningly good looking.” Plus, “She’s funny,” he said. “I like that I can be myself around her—be nerdy and play video games.”

Not everything is perfect, though.

“He’s the world’s worst procrastinator,” Sierra said. “He plays video games all the time.”

Blake was not quote so ready to disclose any fault in his fiancee, though.

“What can I say here and not get in trouble?” he said jokingly, before answering his own question. “Nothing bothers me about Sierra.”

The couple recalled many enjoyable memories, but not everything has been easy for them the past couple of years. Since they come from two different towns, they spend their summers at their own homes. “Being apart in the summer—that was really hard for us,” Sierra explained.

The summer after they first started dating, they tried to see each other every couple of weeks.

A time came, though, when they wouldn’t see each other for about a month because of work and vacation conflicts. One evening after Blake got off of work, he left for Rolla at 5 p.m., stayed a few hours after he arrived until midnight, then drove back home to be at work for the next morning at 8 a.m.

Sierra recalled it as one of the sweetest things he’d done for her, all of it “because he wanted to see me,” she said.

Valentine’s Day quickly approaches, but the wedding seems to remain their only priority on the planning list. Valentine’s day is “his job,” Sierra said.

“We could go rock climbing,” Blake suggested, one of their many hobbies together. Sierra just shook her head.

Apparently the plans remain undecided. Whatever they decide to do for Valentine’s Day, though, they will definitely have a good time. “We have fun,” Blake said. “We laugh a lot.”

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