Alumni Life: Blue Bond

Thicker than Blood

When friends become family

 Polly Hall and Kristen Danas at a post-graduation picnic.

Before they were the Cartys: Polly Hall (left) and Kristen Danas at a post-graduation picnic.

By Namrata Loka

We’ve all heard stories of college sweethearts-turned-spouses. But two best friends becoming sisters-in-law?

Two decades ago, Kristen Danas (BA ’95) and Polly Hall (BA ’96) met as freshmen in Goodyear Hall, and became fast friends. They lived together as suitemates, then rented an apartment together on Lisbon Avenue near the South Campus. They recall many a morning spent eating breakfast at the popular diner Amy’s Place in lieu of attending class, and evenings whiled away at Duff’s. “We always added bleu cheese on our pizza,” says Kristen. “Seems crazy, but we loved it!”

Fast-forward past graduation to Polly’s wedding, in 2004 in Fredonia, N.Y. Polly was marrying her long-term fiancé, Robert Carty (BPS ’96), and Kristen was in attendance as a bridesmaid. Sparks flew when Kristen met Kevin, Robert’s brother, at the church rehearsal the night before the wedding. At the rehearsal, Kevin, an usher, practiced walking Kristen down the aisle. Three years later, it was Kevin and Kristen who were getting married, with Polly and Robert attending the ceremony.

Though the couples now live in different states (Kristen and Kevin in North Carolina, Polly and Robert in New Hampshire), they remain a closeknit bunch. Kristen and Polly talk on the phone every other day and their families frequently vacation together in Florida or Long Island, where the kids watch VHS tapes Kristen and Polly made of their college-era shenanigans and wonder why their moms “looked so weird.” Apparently, these suitemates-turned-sisters have updated their style over the past 21 years, but their friendship has only deepened.

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