This Marine Came Home Early From His Leave and Surprised Her With a Proposal

Image 1 of Mandy and Jon

How We Met – his side

Mandy and I met on February 4, 2013 at a mutual friend’s house for bible study. I was about to leave for boot camp and Mandy was battling a serious medical condition – so we were just friends at the beginning. Over my years on Active Duty in The Marine Corps, however, we kept in touch, talking more and more, and eventually we became best friends.

how we met – her side

We met almost 4 years ago at a young adult Bible Study! We were just friends at first, and he went into the Marines shortly after. We stayed somewhat in contact and then in Summer of 2015, he was on leave and back in town, and he asked if I wanted to get together for a bonfire. We talked the whole night and found out about so many things we had in common. We both said we wanted to keep in contact more and so we did.

We talked almost every single day from that night until now, and we ended up becoming the best of friends. He had his own struggles and I had a severe neurological disorder, and it felt like God placed back in each other’s lives at the perfect time to be there for each other and truly care for each other in our most needed states. I saw so many things in him that’d I’d prayed over for my future husband.

So his next leave came in December of 2015, and when we were together again, we both cried in each other’s arms as we told each other that we knew we were “the one”. He wrote and played me a song on his guitar when he officially asked me to be his girlfriend, and of course, he asked my dad’s permission with intent of marriage too.

Image 2 of Mandy and Jon

how they asked – his side

I was scheduled to have time off to go home in January, but then I got word from our command that I could come home earlier. I decided to use the unexpected good news to surprise Mandy and propose to her.

To ensure Mandy would be ready, I told her that we should have a FaceTime date at noon her time. I said we could dress up nice, like a real date, and she said “OK!” with excitement. Little did she know, I’d told all her family about the proposal and even scheduled a photographer to capture the precious moment.

On the day of, I flew home to snowy Parma, got in my dress blues, grabbed the ring, and knocked on her door. She was completely shocked and it turned out way better than I even imagined.

how they asked – her side

Jon told me he was coming home in January 2017 for his next leave, so that was what I had planned for. In the meantime, we try and talk as much as we can whether it’s through texts, calls or FaceTime. We have pretty regular occurring FaceTime dates and we always dress up for them (it’s super sweet)! So for this particular “date”, we planned for noon my time and I was super excited.

Earlier in the day, my sister, Katie, asked me to go with her for a sister date and get a manicure because she had a fancy Christmas party to go to that night (which was actually true!). When we got back from getting our nails done, I started getting ready for my date with Jon when I heard a knock at the door. I get to the door and see a Marine outfit and my initial reaction was, Sweet! A Marine! I can tell them about Jon (thinking it was a toys for tots thing or something)!

Image 3 of Mandy and Jon

Then I realize it’s him and I can’t even move. I was in such shock! Like dead shock! My sister actually had to unlock the door and push it open, as I was standing there in complete shock mode.

Image 4 of Mandy and Jon

Image 5 of Mandy and Jon

All I could do was hold on to him! It didn’t even feel real! It was so crazy hard to explain haha! I just wanted to hold on and not let go! Like nothing else in the world mattered because I was in his arms! I was soooo overwhelmed with joy all I could do was laugh!

Image 6 of Mandy and Jon

He was saying things like, thank you for being so patient and all these sweet things and telling me he loved me. And then he said, “I have a question for you. Are you ready?” And he got down on one knee and said, “Amanda, will you marry me?” I freaked out and said, “Yes! A gazillion times yes!”

Image 7 of Mandy and Jon

Image 8 of Mandy and Jon

Image 9 of Mandy and Jon

And then I just went back to hugging him – I was so, so, so happy to be with him that I totally forgot about the ring. He pulled it out again and gave it to me. I remember saying, “it’s so beautiful” and he responded with, “just like you.”

Image 10 of Mandy and Jon

Image 11 of Mandy and Jon

Image 12 of Mandy and Jon

Our Video

Special Thanks

Katie Pylypiv
 | Photographer