Ilyana and Rashaan

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How We Met

Rashaan was the Football Player from Indiana and I was the Cheerleader from California, we met the second week of classes in August of 2014. I was new the new girl on campus, I had just transferred to APSU after being scouted during the summer to cheer there and he was the popular cool guy that everyone loved (although he’ll never admit that)! We had a mutual friend, Connor that was on the cheer team with me. Connor was one of my closest friends on campus, seeing as I spent most of my time at practice or at football games with him so one day we were on the bus on the way back from the first game of the season in Memphis,TN and he began to mention how he thought he had a guy friend for every new girl on the team, that is except for me. He told me he just couldn’t think of anyone….that is until the night after we got back from the Memphis game. In true Millennial fashion, I received a SnapChat from Connor at a party, only the snap wasn’t of Connor, it was of the most handsome man I had ever set my eyes on. I remember snapping Connor back immediately, saying who is that, with the heart eye emojis and from there Connor opened the door for our virtual world introduction. a few days later Rashaan sent me a direct message on Instagram and we ran into each other at school in between classes and I was a nervous girly mess but from then on the rest was history. The first time we hung out, we lost track of time talking until 4 in the morning! From that night on I knew there was something special about him. He made me smile and feel like no other man had ever made me feel, we had just met and I felt like I had known him my entire life.

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how they asked

Fast forward 2 1/2 years later, its graduation day and little did I know what all Rashaan had planned for an already exciting day! I graduated in the morning and he graduated in the afternoon so after his ceremony we decided we were going to take photos with our friends and family in our caps and gowns. My cousin Rico was fixing my hair and making sure I looked picture perfect when Rashaan was headed towards us, I didn’t think anything of this because this is normal Rico behavior, and he’s always fixing me up. Rico was in front of me fixing my hair and on either side of me I had my friend Tyler and Rashaan’s Grandma talking to me so I couldn’t see anything, but from what I have been told Rashaan was walking towards our family with about 50 of our closest friends following him. When Grandma Cheri, Tyler and Rico finally stepped away from me I turned around and to my surprise Rashaan was down on one knee with all of our friends and family surrounding us! Immediately my jaw dropped and I began to shake and laugh from excitement, I remember it was a rainy gloomy day but as he was proposing the clouds cleared up and gave way for the sun to shine through, exactly like it does in the movies.

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He asked if I would marry him and I dropped everything in my hands and immediately said yes with tears streaming down my face and excited shreeks surrounding us! Normally I’m the photo fanatic running around with my camera taking photos of everyone but Rashaan had planned it out so that all of our friends knew what was going on and they could take photos and videos of our special moment for us. The best part is he found a way to include my best friend, Olivia in the entire process even though she couldn’t be there that day. He and Rico went and bought the ring together and a couple of weeks later Olivia came to visit us from Alabama, and gave her final blessing on the ring and his plan, even though they had been planning everything together through the phone all along. It meant the world to me to have her involved in everything and to be able to have all of our friends and family at the same place at the same time for the proposal.

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Our Video

Special Thanks

Rico Gardner
 | Planning
Gino Roberson
 | Photographer
Olivia Deyoung
 | Planning