The Sunday Independent football writer Dion Fanning has announced his engagement to his girlfriend, Aalia Kamal, bringing a happy end to a difficult year of grief and loss.
Dion's father, Aengus Fanning, the former editor of this newspaper, died in January after an illness.
Dion had introduced his father to Aalia, and Aengus and Aalia became close, and, according to Dion, he "knew" that she was the one for his eldest son.
"In fact, he knew immediately," said Dion.
Aalia is the daughter of Barbara and Asif Kamal, from Lincoln. She is a paintings conservator and works in Cambridge. They met through mutual friends at a party and they have been together for 18 months. Dion proposed yesterday at the Galilee Porch at Lincoln Cathedral, and, luckily for him, she accepted.
"I'm very happy and everyone is very glad, after everything that happened this year. It's lovely," he said.