Weddings & Engagements

A Family Affair

For one family, lightning struck twice. Ethan L. Murray ’05, who encouraged Matthew M. Mulder ’05 to date his sister

Amara L. Murray ’03, is now engaged to her roommate, Shannon Music ’03.

Amara L. Murray ’03 and Matthew M. Mulder ’05

Amara L. Murray ’03 and Matthew M. Mulder ’05 met when Ms. Murray supervised Mr. Mulder at the Harvard Square Homeless Shelter his freshman year. It wasn’t quite love at first sight.


“At first I just thought of her as a great supervisor at the homeless shelter,” Mr. Mulder says. “Since we started dating, I have learned more and more each day what a wonderful person she is. As we fell more and more in love with one another, we both knew that we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together.”

Mr. Mulder did not ask Ms. Murray out until Valentine’s Day his sophomore year. The relationship still progressed slowly. “Freshman year, Amara’s younger brother Ethan [L. Murray ’05], who was in the Glee Club with me, encouraged me to invite Amara to the Glee Club semiformal dance at the end of our freshman year. It turns out that it was some of the best advice I’ve ever gotten, and I’m very excited that Ethan will now be my brother in law.”

Mr. Mulder gained her parents’ blessing and planned a romantic proposal at her family’s oceanside home in Jamestown, R.I.

“We woke up at sunrise and kayaked out about half a mile to Hope Island, a little uninhabited island in the bay,” says Mulder. “We went up on to a rock and I got down on my knee and proposed to her there. It was a very happy kayak ride back to her house.”

The couple will be married on July 30 in Jamestown.

In the fall, the couple will move to North Carolina while Ms. Murray interviews for medical school. The two will then travel to Kenya to work at the Ugunja Community Resource Center, “an organization that operates programs in sustainable agriculture, health and disability, education and women’s empowerment,” says Mr. Mulder.

Finding love at Harvard, though difficult, is “great!” he says. “I feel so very fortunate that I met Amara at school; she has brought so much joy and happiness to my life, and I’m so thankful to God that we’ll be together again, and that we’ll be staying together, after two years apart.” —A.M.L.

Shannon Music ’03 and Ethan L. Murray ’05

For Ethan L. Murray ’05, Thanksgiving is a holiday for which he is particularly thankful. His junior year of high school, Mr. Murray’s older sister, Amara Murray ’03, was accompanied to the family Thanksgiving dinner in Jamestown, R.I. by her Lowell House roommate, Shannon Music ’03. “I thought, ‘What a great girl,’” Mr. Murray recalls. “And then the next year, she came again for Thanksgiving and I thought, that’s the kind of girl I’d like to marry.”