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Bison Love: Creating a Family Legacy

Marisha and Solomon Humphries standing by silver and black party decor

It was 1991. Marisha Slaughter (BA ’94) was at an off-campus fraternity party when Solomon Humphries (BA ’94) approached her and her roommate. “He came up and asked my roommate if she wanted to dance,” Marisha says.

When her roommate said “no,” Solomon turned to Marisha and asked if she was game to go out on the dance floor. Not one to settle for second-best, Marisha admits that, normally in that situation, she would have said “no.” But the song that was playing was one of her favorites. “I wanted to dance to that song, so I was like, “Sure, I’ll dance,’” she says. They danced for the rest of the night.

Solomon called Marisha that Sunday and they planned their first date – they bought a banana split at Baskin Robbins and shared it in the park. “It was a real cheap date,” Solomon laughs. But it served its purpose, and the connection between the two was sealed.

Though they both were wary about getting involved too soon in a full-fledged relationship, they often found themselves in each other’s company. In 1992, Marisha went home with Solomon for Thanksgiving, and by 1993, they were officially a couple.

After graduating from college, they dated off and on for about a year. Then in 1995, they both ended up in Chicago, with Solomon taking a job and Marisha going to grad school. After living together for about a year, Solomon proposed in October 1996, and they married on July 5, 1997. (Marisha changed her last name to Humphries.)

Their family grew in February of 2003 with the birth of their first son, Micai. In October 2006, their second son, Marshall, was born.

Humphries family sitting in their garden
Marisha and Solomon Humphries with their two sons, Micai and Marshall.

From their children’s earliest days, they were exposed to the Mecca. They knew it as the place where Mommy and Daddy met. “Micai went to his first Homecoming when he was two,” Marisha says. “We have a video of him dancing on the Yard.”

When it came time for Micai to start looking into colleges, both Solomon and Marisha secretly wanted him to choose Howard, but they also wanted him to have the freedom to make his own decision. When he received his acceptance letter and decided Howard was where he wanted to be, “I was super excited,” Solomon says. “I just wanted to continue the legacy.”

Today, Micai is a freshman majoring in clinical laboratory science, and his parents are looking forward to the first Homecoming when they will all be on the Yard in person once pandemic fears fade away. They are also hoping his Howard experience turns out to be as fulfilling and life-changing for him as their experience has been for them.

“Howard was a space where I came into my own,” Marisha says. “We both enjoyed Howard so much. We just want Micai to create wonderful memories too.”