Seth Johnson popped the question to Bella Miller at Ghostlight Coffee shop, 1201 Wayne Ave. in South Park, on May 10.
The engagement came almost a year to the date after the couple’s first date there.
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“It was absolutely a dream, but I woke up with the ring still on my finger,” said Miller, a nanny. “I think it was so beautiful that he chose to do it there. Unfortunately, we were not sitting in the same spot because someone was sitting there.”
Miller said she didn’t see the engagement coming.
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“I’ve always loved Ghostlight Coffee shop, and I was super excited to be there again,” she said. “It’s just so special.”
Ghostlight was voted best coffee shop in Dayton.com’s 2018 Best of Dayton contest.
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Johnson met Miller, both 20, about two years ago at SpringHill Christian Summer Camp.
They were born four days apart.
He was working as a counselor. She was a lifeguard.
“Someone bet me I wouldn’t get her Snapchat (contact information),” said Johnson, a former Michigan resident.
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The pair’s friendship grew long distance even though Johnson, a former Arizona State University student, lives in Tempe, Ariz. and Miller resides in Troy.
“I said ‘I am just going to drive out to see her’,” he said.
He drove to the Dayton area from his parents’ house in Michigan, where he was spending the summer, to meet Miller.
After a minor snafu that had her separated from her cell phone, they decided to meet up the following day at Ghostlight.
“We probably spent three hours there talking about our lives. It was just an intimate moment to start our relationship,” he said.
During the 10- hour date, Miller also took Johnson to Skyline Chili, for a walk along the Great Miami River and to Yellow Springs.
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“We spent 10 hours just talking to each other and learning about each other,” he said. “It was one of the best days of my life.”
The employee at Fry's Food Stores, a Kroger-owned grocery store, Johnson solicited help for his proposal from Miller's sister, 21-year-old Julie Miller, and Ghostlight owner Shane Anderson.
He presented Miller flowers as RL Grime's "Atoms" — their song — played in the coffee shop.
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“I was overcome by the emotions of the moment,” Johnson said. “I am just super excited to be engaged and to have Ghostlight be part of it.”
He acknowledged that some people knock long-distance relationships, but he said his feelings for Miller are true and strong.
He plans to move to the Dayton area in June and eventually hopes to go back to college to pursue a career in marketing.
“I don’t really care if I am in Arizona or Ohio,” he said. “I want to be with her.”