UD Love Stories 2018: Brent and Katrina Hamilton

Feb 21, 2018

From Move-In Day to Happily Ever After

Brent Hamilton (C'96) and Katrina O'Loughlin (C'96) met at UD in the fall of 1992, their freshman year, over Labor Day weekend.  Katrina and her mother were carrying a microwave to her dorm room on the fourth floor of Cassat Hall.  When they arrived, they were surprised to find a room full of people, one of whom was Brent.  Brent had already been on campus for a few weeks, preparing for the fall football season.  Little did Katrina know this group of people would become her college family and best friends. 

Over the course of their freshman year, Katrina and Brent learned they had a lot in common. They enjoyed taking walks around Dubuque together and getting to know more about each other.  By April of 1993 their friendship had blossomed into romance, and they began dating.  One of their favorite memories while dating at UD was when Brent stepped out the message, "I love you," in fresh snow one night on the north side of Cassat Hall. "I was so excited to call Katrina the next morning to tell her to look out her window. I couldn't wait for her to see it," Brent said.  Just one year later, during the spring of their sophomore year, Brent proposed to Katrina at a park near her hometown.

The two became Mr. and Mrs. Hamilton over Christmas break their junior year, on January 7, 1995, at 2:00 p.m. at Holy Family Catholic Church in West Union, Iowa. The reception immediately followed the ceremony in the fellowship hall of the church. Brent and Katrina were blessed to have many of their UD friends stand beside them as they said "I Do" -  Jennifer Rateike (C'96) was a bridesmaid, Nate Rohe (C'96) was the best man, Jeff Hickman (C'96) and Zhengua Kong (C'95) were groomsmen, and Annie (Kirkpatrick) Caves (C'96) sang at the wedding ceremony.

The couple graduated from UD in May of 1996. Katrina received a bachelor of arts in elementary education and Brent earned a bachelor of science in mathematics.  After graduation, they moved to Ames, Iowa, where Brent pursued a master of science in mathematics.  Upon obtaining his master's degree, Brent began working as a mathematics instructor at North Iowa Area Community College (NIACC) in Mason City.  Brent returned to school one more time, after receiving a calling to ordained ministry as a deacon in the United Methodist Church.  This also provided him the opportunity to teach ethics and lead campus ministry at NIACC.

Katrina initially worked as the youth director and Christian education director at their church.  She now teaches fourth grade at Newman Catholic Elementary School.  Katrina said, "It is a dream come true. I completed my student teaching at Bryant Elementary School in fourth grade and after that I knew it was the grade I wanted to teach."

In May of 2000, Katrina and Brent were over-joyed to welcome their daughter, Brenann, into the world.  Five years later they adopted a daughter and son, Jesstina and Noah.  The children attend Newman Catholic Schools and keep Brent and Katrina very busy.

Brent enjoys sharing his love of hiking and being with his family.  He and Katrina have similar teaching schedules, which gives them the opportunity for family time in the summer months.  As a family, they have hiked in Canada, Yellowstone National Park, and Colorado, where they climbed the Twin Sisters Mountain by Estes Park.  Brent also enjoys volunteering at Newman High School as a football coach, where he passes on the skills and experiences he gained at UD as an offensive lineman on the football team.

Katrina and Brent both have fond memories of their time at the University of Dubuque and enjoy getting together with their old circle of friends.