Building a family
But the skills to become the senior pastor at the Seventh-day Adventist Church are not the only thing he gained while in college. He and his wife, Suzy, met during his time at Southwestern Adventist University.
Both Geraldo and Suzy like to use their creativity and when Suzy suggested painting Geraldo’s stool, which he often sat on while he taught, he knew she was a keeper.
“It was actually after we painted it that I asked her to be my girlfriend,” Alonso said.
They were engaged by their last year of college. In November, they will celebrate their third wedding anniversary.
Although creativity led them to each other, their love for outdoor activities have brought them closer.
Up until Suzy’s second trimester during her pregnancy with their daughter, the couple would go to Greenleaf State Park to hike.
“About a year ago we took up birding,” Alonso said. “We wanted to learn something new to get our daughter interested in the outdoors.”
Alonso’s daughter, Adelynn Jean, at 25 days old already shares her parents’ love for outdoor activities.
Adelynn already completed a 5K on May 12. “Obviously she rode the whole time, but she seemed to enjoy it,“ Alonso said. “She didn’t cry the entire time.”
HOW DID YOU COME TO BE AN OKIE FROM MUSKOGEE?
“Work brought me here. I graduated from college and then got a job at this church.”
WHAT DO YOU DO WITH YOUR FREE TIME?
“My wife and I had our first baby. So lately we have been taking care of her, feeding her, et cetera, et cetera. But for that we loved hiking and outdoorsy stuff.”
HOW DO YOU MAKE A LIVING IN MUSKOGEE?
“As a pastor.”
WHAT WOULD MAKE MUSKOGEE A BETTER PLACE TO LIVE?
“I enjoy being here. I love it the way it is. Coming from a big town that has everything to Muskogee, which has everything we need. It is perfect place to live.”
IS THERE AN OKIE FROM MUSKOGEE THAT YOU ADMIRE?
“I would have to say my wife’s boss, Laura May. She always tries to do what is best and I admire how she takes care her staff. I just admire that she always wants to do what is right.”
WHAT’S THE MOST MEMORABLE THING THAT HAS HAPPENED TO YOU SINCE YOU HAVE LIVED IN MUSKOGEE?
“Having my daughter. Even if I go anywhere she will always be an Okie from Muskogee.”
HOW WOULD YOU SUM UP MUSKOGEE?
“For me it is how awesome the people are. Coming from a big town to Muskogee, I love the people. Texans have a reputation of being friendly, but I think Okies are even more friendly. Among 25 million people you can feel so alone. People are genuinely nice and not trying to get something from you.”