Minutes after crossing the finish line at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Liverpool Half Marathon on Sunday, a finishing medal draped around his neck, England’s Ian Rowlands dropped to one knee and proposed to his girlfriend, Ruth Lycett.
The hooting and hollering of the nearby volunteers and spectators let all know that Lycett, who ran side-by-side with Rowlands, said yes. The groom-to-be pulled the engagement ring out of a box and placed it on Lycett’s finger.
For Rowlands, a 30-year-old from Burntwood, England, it was, by his count, his 12th half marathon. It was the 27-year-old Lycett’s second.
“We’ve trained together, and we worked hard to train together for the event,” said Rowlands, who works in a factory making rubber car parts. “We got through it. I thought (the proposal) was the perfect time to cap it off.”
Lycett, 27, who lives in Cannock, England, works in a center for people with learning disabilities and ran in honor of the center. As excited as she was about becoming engaged, Lycett embraced that she’s raising awareness for people who are less fortunate than others.
“People with learning disabilities are just amazing,” Lycett said. “They don’t let anything stop them. It’s the most rewarding job you could ever have.”