Those looking for inconsistencies in Te’o’s claim that he was the victim of a cruel hoax keep pointing to this Oct. 12 article in the South Bend Tribune that more than implies he met his mythical girlfriend Lennay Kekua face-to-face after a game against Stanford.
It never felt like a chance meeting, although it probably appeared that way from the outside looking in.
Their stares got pleasantly tangled, then Manti Te'oextended his hand to the stranger with a warm smile and soulful eyes.
They could have just as easily brushed past each other and into separate sunsets. Te'o had plenty to preoccupy himself that November weekend in Palo Alto, Calif., back in 2009.
Lennay Kekua was a Stanford student and Cardinal football fan when the two exchanged glances, handshakes and phone numbers that fateful weekend three seasons ago.
She was gifted in music, multi-lingual, had dreams grounded in reality and the talent to catch up to them.
The plan was for Kekua to spend extensive time with the whole Te'o family when upwards of 40 of them came to South Bend in mid-November for ND's Senior Day date with Wake Forest.
“They started out as just friends,” Brian Te'o said. “Every once in a while, she would travel to Hawaii, and that happened to be the time Manti was home, so he would meet with her there. But within the last year, they became a couple.
“And we came to the realization that she could be our daughter-in-law. Sadly, it won't happen now.”
Yeah, very surprising it didn’t all work out.
The article’s author, Eric Hansen, said he got the narrative of the couple’s real-life encounters from Te’o himself. Why is that important? It directly contradicts the notion that this was an online-only relationship, as claimed by Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick.
Another big revelation is Te’o speaking about letters he received from Kekua a good two months after her supposed death.
This story, guys. It’s a mindfuck.