Former Gents star pops the question in Gold Dome
Wednesday, October 3, 2012

SHREVEPORT – When Katrina Thomas left the Museum of Champions induction ceremony with now-fiancé Larry Robinson, she knew something didn’t seem right. And as time would tell, she was spot on.

The couple, which has been together for two years, celebrated their engagement at the Gold Dome Aug. 4, a place that has always been special to Robinson, a Centenary alumnus. The two will be married Feb. 16 in Shreveport.

“Becoming a man really started at Centenary, so we want to embrace the Centenary family,” Robinson said. “I wouldn’t be the man I am today without Centenary. We’ve been away, but I want people to know that Centenary has a way of impacting your life. We’ll be here to support when business doesn’t keep us away.”

Robinson’s induction created the perfect opportunity for the entire family to be in town, so he decided to gather the family for a portrait at the Gold Dome, all part of his proposal plan. But Thomas’ intuition led her to believe something would happen at the induction.

“I knew something was coming. I just didn’t know when. I thought it was going to come at the program, and I was thinking ‘I’m leaving here without a ring. Something’s not right,’” she said with a big laugh.

As perfectly as they fit together now, it wasn’t always that easy. In fact, when they first met, Robinson was dating someone else at the time, but he knew there was something special about Katrina, he said.

“Oh my goodness, this is the most beautiful woman. I can’t take my eyes off of her,” he thought as he first met her.

The two have children around the same age, which Robinson used as a conversation starter, but Thomas gave him very limited time. About a year later, Robinson was at a Dr. Cedric Ellis’ house, also a Centenary graduate, watching the NBA playoffs when God revealed something to him, he said.

Earlier that year, Katrina participated in a calendar shoot and was elected as Ms. February. When Larry walked into Cedric’s house, that calendar was the first thing he saw. And it wasn’t by dumb luck it was still on February, in June.

“As faith has it, God showed me my queen right then and there. I stopped and said ‘is this really happening?’” Robinson said. “Cedric said that he had been in and out and had been so busy that it never crossed his mind. We realize now it had nothing to do with Cedric and everything to do with God.”

The couple had a circumstance about six months into their relationship where marriage crossed Katrina’s mind, but wasn’t anywhere near Larry’s. Larry decided to surprise Katrina with a birthday party and invited her entire family. Her Uncle Rufus convinced her Larry was going to propose, something Larry wasn’t considering that far into the relationship.

“He told Uncle Rufus nothing about proposing,” Katrina said. “He just said we were getting a birthday party together, setting up for 60-70 people.”

That turned into a big joke, and was significant enough that Larry asked Uncle Rufus to hold the ring for him before he proposed at the Gold Dome.

Both Katrina and Larry are extremely dedicated to their families, and bring together five total children, four from Larry and one from Katrina.

Giorgio (23) is the oldest of the clan, finishing his last year of college at Michigan State. Jasmine (20), Larry’s oldest daughter, transferred from Southern-Shreveport to play basketball at La. Tech. She was ranked the No. 24 small forward in the country.

Lenice, Katrina's son, is the middle of the five, and Katrina’s only child. The 19-year-old ULL sophomore is the “life of the family,” they said.

“He’s Larry’s four wrapped into one,” Katrina said. “He makes everyone feel good about themselves.”

Larry (14) is the youngest son and takes after his dad, they said. The Airline freshman is a gym rat, constantly working on his basketball game.

“He’s definitely a younger version of me,” older Larry said. “He’s retro. He wants to wear the style they did in the 80s and 90s. He’s very fundamentally sound.”

Flecity (6) is the family’s youngest, named for the Spanish definition of happiness.

“That fits her because she’s a happy little girl and she makes us very happy,” Larry and Katrina said.

They also have a special Godson, Justin Patton (22), who’s playing his fifth year at North Texas St. The 6-8 forward transferred from Grambling.

After talking with Larry and Katrina, it’s no mystery that their families play such important roles in their lives, but that doesn’t compare to their remarkable faith.

“This journey that God has us on, we both have agreed and understood that God is allowing us to touch lives that we know and don’t know,” Larry said. “Who knows? There could be another Larry and Katrina out there somewhere down the road.”