Wednesday 21 February 2018

Surprise proposal thousands of miles from home goes off without a hitch

 "Fairy tale proposal still hasn't fully sunk in" says James

Eimear Phelan

Arkansas man James Smith spent months organising his secret proposal to his much-loved girlfriend at her favourite spot in the world... in Co Louth.

The American travelled thousands of miles and spent months organising the secret proposal in his other half's hometown.

Romantic James contacted Briana McLeer’s cousin Karen McLeer who lives in Briana’s home spot of Clogherhead Co. Louth.

Karen and her friend Lynn Mallon kept everything top secret from Briana and arranged a picnic spot on the top of the head yesterday where the surprise proposal was going to take place.

The couple will have been together four years next month but Briana was so shocked 'she kept saying yes' and the picnic spot turned out perfect and everyone was 'in tears by the end of it', Lynn told

And it wasn't just Briana that was surprised during the romantic proposal.

“We surprised James too,” said Lynn as the two girls arranged for champagne, roses and even a teddy for the couple that had to be rescued from the wind at the picturesque location.

The place the proposal took place was really important to Briana, as it was her favourite spot in Clogherhead.

“It was where she used to go as a teenager to think,” Lynn shared.

When James started planning the perfect proposal as far back as September last year he quickly "realized I needed local help" and thats when Karen and Lynn came in.

James said he "never doubted were it would happen... Briana's most favorite place in the world!!!".

briana 2.jpg

The party-planning pair also surprised the couple with a night in The D Hotel last night, Drogheda’s luxury 4 star hotel, and a photographer to be at the spot to capture the happy couple.

“I was so stressed you’d swear it was me asking her to marry me!," Lynn laughed, “She was just shocked.”

James was a little bit nervous but was confident in the two girl’s ability to keep a secret.

Lynn said the hard work and secrecy was 'so worth it' as 'we really wanted to get it right for her'.

"I was nervous wanting to make sure it went off perfect for her," said James but he was more nervous about telling her parents than popping the question

Briana later posted on Facebook; “It was the most romantic moment ever and done at a place that means so much to me ... thank you James :))xoxo”.

Briana had lived in America since her late teens and hadn’t returned to Ireland in roughly 10 years. The two met in a restaurant in Springdale Arkansas at a "bike night".

James said on the night he "kept texting a friend of mine name Mary to move she was blocking my view" of his future fiancée but Mary read out his texts to Briana and the rest, as they say, is history.

The two travelled over from Arkansas just over a week ago and have been sampling the delights of Ireland ever since.


They are going to be here for five or six weeks according to Lynn and are planning to see different parts of Ireland, spending a few days in Dublin, visiting the Titanic museum in Belfast and even a visit Cork for a few days.

“It was a bit crazy but we pulled it off," said Lynn, “It’s the second time myself and Karen have arranged an engagement, we know how to keep a secret.

“If you see them together, they are just so into each other. It’s just right.”

James has said that they are "still in shock" but are "very excited to start planning a Irish wedding in a couple years".

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