COSTILLA COUNTY — Steven Williams had the proposal all laid out, but Mother Nature set fire to his plans — literally.
The Red Cross reported that the Tennessee man, his family and his girlfriend Brittney Brewer had traveled to Colorado to camp on family property in Forbes Park for a special surprise: He was going to propose to Brewer on Blanca Peak, one of the highest summits in the Rocky Mountains.
But the Spring Fire, which reached 103,357 acres Thursday, moved near their camp, and in late June, the group had to evacuate on very short notice.
They left tents and hiking gear behind, grabbed only the essential items and headed for the Red Cross shelter at the Blanca-Fort Garland Community Center in Costilla County. Among other items, Williams grabbed the engagement ring.
It wasn’t long before they learned their hiking gear had been lost in the fire, nixing Williams’s plan of proposing at the summit of the mountain. Instead, flowing with the changed plans, the family visited the nearby Great Sand Dunes National Park and Williams popped the question. Brewer said yes.
When they returned to the shelter for a Fourth of July cookout, the news spread and fellow evacuees cheered for the newly engaged couple.
They plan to marry this fall in Tennessee.