Kelly McCoy, originally from Erie, Pennsylvania, recently moved to the Niagara River Region from Jacksonville, Florida, where she had met her boyfriend, Jeffrey Kurek. She had no idea what was about to happen during a visit to Old Fort Niagara last Saturday for the fort's Civil War Garrison Weekend.
Kurek, a U.S. Coast Guard member originally from the Youngstown area, had just been assigned to U.S. Coast Guard Station Niagara. He told his family he wanted to use the fort as a staging point to "pop the question" to Kelly.
Following a couple of text messages, plans were set in motion with personnel at the fort to create a fake photo op to set up the moment. A crew of re-enactors of the 49th Volunteer Infantry Regiment of the Greater Buffalo Area got into the act.
"I just couldn't believe what was happening," McCoy said. "The setting at the fort was beautiful."
"The experience of coming home and asking my girl this question had to happen at a special place to match how special Kelly is to me," Kurek said.
Jed Platt of Hamburg, a member of the 49th, stood beside McCoy during the proposal.
"This was very moving," Platt said. "I'm going to have to do something like this, too, but first I'll just need to find a girl who will date me."
Oh, by the way: Kelly said "yes."
(Photos and story submitted by www.pyrba.org)