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‘It felt like a movie!’ One of Dayton’s most popular holiday traditions ends with a surprise proposal

Weather had ruined Trey Benson’s marriage proposal plans multiple times. A few months later, backed by a dance squad and an entire Dayton parade, he would succeed. 

Dayton couple, Trey Benson and Selina Herrera recently got engaged during the Dayton Holiday Festival on Friday, Nov.23. The couple shared their engagement story with us.

Benson coordinated with relatives to surprise Herrera by pulling her front and center and dropping to one knee while “Marry You” by Bruno Mars filled the entire street. 

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On a couple occasions, Benson attempted to propose to his girlfriend of two years at their favorite spot, Charleston Falls Preserve in Tipp City. But plans were derailed by thunderstorms every time. 

(Selina Herrera)

“So there’s been a couple times where he’s tried to do it and it was a fail,” Herrera said. “So he’s like, ‘This time I had to do it over the top.’”

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Benson was walking in the parade to support his little cousin, who is a member of the Huber Heights Future Warriors Dance Team. He positioned his then-girlfriend, who knew nothing of the coming surprise, with his mother, where they were to watch while he paraded on by. 

“It was funny because I didn’t even catch on, either,” Herrera said. “My future mother-in-law and her cousin were like, ‘You have to be at the front of the barricade! Don’t let anyone get in front of you!’ And I was like, ‘I know I’m short but I can see over little kids.’ They said, ‘Don’t let the little kids get in front of you!’ and I said, ‘OK OK!’” 

The Fremont, Ohio-native said she was shocked when she realized what was going on as her now-fiance pulled her into the spotlight during the parade. Before popping the question, Benson ran to the back of the parade vehicle, where he had a dozen roses waiting.

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“He started pulling me out there and I was like, ‘No, no, no!’ And then after I registered what was happening I was like, ‘Why am I saying no?!’ It was so crazy. It felt just like a movie,” Herrera said.  

(Selina Herrera)

The couple has already set a date and Herrera said they are excited to begin their lives in Dayton.

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