Love Story

Steven Gonzalez ’04, M.A. ’12 and Dina Ramirez ’09

By John Kissell
Photo by Jon Rou

Ten dates. The punch card was the key. For Steven Gonzalez ’04, M.A. ’12 and Dina Ramirez ’09, punch cards became the symbol of their courtship.


Steven Gonzalez ’04, M.A. ’12 and Dina Ramirez ’09

Steven Gonzalez ’04, M.A. ’12 earned his bachelor’s degree in English and his master’s in education. He works in the LMU Office of Undergraduate Admission. Dina Ramirez ’09 earned her bachelor’s degree in liberal studies. She is a special education teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District. They were married on June 22, 2013.

Steven Gonzalez ’04, M.A. ’12 asked Dina Ramirez ’09 if he could be her boyfriend on their second date. Dina’s mother didn’t think they knew each other well enough. Ten dates, her mother said, then he could be her boyfriend. Dina thought of the buy-10-get-one-free car wash promo card in her purse. She made a punch card. She found a heart-shaped hole punch.

Go to a wedding, punch. Attend a family party, punch. Take in a movie, punch. The 10th date, have a dinner at Islands. Punch. “I thought if he could go along with this, he’s pretty special,” Dina says.

After 10 dates, Dina changed her Facebook status to “in a relationship.” They had met each other through mutual LMU friends on Facebook and had chatted a lot before their first date. Now, the couple grew closer and closer. When marriage came to his mind, Steven knew he wanted to propose at the spot of that second date: in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland.

He got Dina in place on April 29, 2012. He went to one knee. Before he pulled out the ring, he handed her a card: “Will you marry me?” it said on the front; on the back were the letters “Y” and “N.”

Dina punched yes.

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