When Manchester Valley High School junior Elijah Williams, 16, was planning to ask to prom senior Marie Kasten, 16 — his girlfriend of two years — he wanted to ask in a special way.
His sister Alexes Williams, 20, thought up the idea of doing a crime scene-themed "promposal" because Kasten's father, Phil Kasten, is a former chief deputy of the Carroll County Sheriff's Office and is now a police chief in Vermont.
"I thought that since her dad works for the police, it would be a good idea," he said.
His sister bought tape for the fake crime scene that they staged on the driveway in front of Kasten's house. They knew they would need time to set up the scene to surprise her.
So they enlisted their mother, Tristam Williams, who contacted Marie's mom, Kay Kasten. Both moms devised a plan that Kay would take Marie grocery shopping for the Easter holiday to distract her while Alexes helped Elijah set up the scene.
When they were on their way back from the Walmart store, Kay alerted them.
Upon pulling up to their house, Marie saw the crime tape and Elijah lying in her driveway with a chalk outline around his body, next to a message written in chalk that said, "I'm dying to go to prom with you!"
Marie said she never expected Elijah to come up with such a creative way of asking her to prom.
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"I was really surprised," Marie said. "It meant a lot to me because my father is a police officer."
She said yes. The couple will attend their first prom together tonight at the Wyndham hotel in Gettysburg, Pa.
Kasten will be moving in about a month to Vermont with her family once the school year is finished, and that's why Elijah wanted to make the proposal a memorable one.
"I thought that I'd make it special rather than just being ordinary and just asking her," Elijah said.