This is one of our favorite Christmas stories this year:

A St. George, Utah man finally got to pop the question to his crush from decades ago. Can you believe it?

It all started when a local photographer needed a Santa and Mrs. Claus for a family party in St. George, Utah. Alyssa Ence is the professional photographer who ended up hiring the two 53-year-olds who first met in middle school forty years ago.

Via KUTV:

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The man playing Santa for the party told the photographer his plan to propose and said he’d do the job as Santa for nothing if she would photograph the proposal.

During the staged photo shoot, Troy Thode proposed to Cheryl Hawker, whom he met when both were 13.

The funny thing is the two had crushes on each other during middle and high school, but they never went on a date.

Hawker had this to say about her crush on Thode: “It’s a sweet story that started 40 years ago when he first asked me out on a date and I told him, ‘No. my dad will get mad!'”

They drifted apart after high school and then reconnected in 2018 when they realized they were both single and started dating.

The two had been working as Santa and Mrs. Claus in previous appearances so this was a total surprise for Hawker.

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A very happy ending and some really great photos capturing the moment. Merry Christmas!

Alyssa Ence posted the photo on Facebook with the caption: “This is REAL LIFE people!! This actually happened and wasn’t staged. It was such a magical moment and it had everyone in tears. Let’s just say ‘I BELIEVE!!’”

Fantastic photos captured the moment. Christmas magic!

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