Saturday, 13 February 2016

Romantic Millom soldier surprises fiancée

MILITARY manoeuvres were carefully planned as a love-struck soldier made a move for his sweetheart’s hand in marriage.

Donna Pook was left “completely speechless” when her boyfriend Lance Corporal John O’Neill, who she thought had been deployed to Northern Ireland on Sunday night, marched in dressed in full army uniform and got down on one knee yesterday.

With the help of three of Miss Pook’s friends, LCpl O’Neill secretly arranged to sweep his beloved off her feet at the Millom Network Centre.

The plans were formulated “in the last week”, but LCpl O’Neill admitted: “I’ve been thinking about asking her for a while.”

As part of the action plan, LCpl O’Neill told his girlfriend on Sunday afternoon that he was going to catch a ferry to Ireland as part of a deployment with his army unit.

In reality, that evening he went to stay at a friend’s house in Barrow for the night.

Yesterday morning the 30-year-old, who is originally from Carlisle, waited nervously outside the Network Centre for the signal from Miss Pook’s friends that she was in the canteen. In the build up to the big moment, LCpl said that his “heart was racing.”

When the signal was given he made his move, with a bouquet of flowers and ring in hand, to where his girlfriend sat with her friend.

The brave soldier was “over the moon” when his girlfriend said yes.

After the proposal, 32-year-old Miss Pook, from Millom, said: “I didn’t suspect a thing – I’m in shock.”

LCpl O’Neill says he could be deployed to Afghanistan in the new year, so he wanted to make this a Christmas to remember.

After toasting his new fiancée with a glass of champagne, LCpl O’Neill joked: “I’ve done all the hard work now, she can treat me by making dinner.’’


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