By Terry Leavitt
Tasha Dunsey shows off her engagement ring with fiance John O'Kelly, who popped the question on Mount Washington. (JAMIE GEMMITI PHOTO)CONWAY — Last Friday was a memorable day for John O'Kelly and Tasha Dunsey of Philadelphia. The young couple's trip to the summit of Mount Washington, booked months in advance, was finally coming together.
But the memories O'Kelly hoped to make included more than taking a Snow Cat to the top of the Northeast's highest peak. Once they reached the summit, he planned to pop the question. Yes, that question.
The proposal was months in the making.
O'Kelly, 33, who booked the Snow Cat ride with the Mount Washington Observatory in August, had been coming to the valley for more than 20 years. He started bringing Dunsey, 30, when they began dating two years ago.
In terms of the area, "we love everything about it," O'Kelly said. "There's so much to do, so many trails for hiking."
Last year, they even rode the Polar Express at Christmas time.
"And we're really into breweries," said Dunsey.
They also believe in supporting the Mount Washington Observatory's mission of scientific research and education. "They are a non-profit. We want to support their weather research, and research in general," O'Kelly said.
Booking the trip was just the beginning. O'Kelly bought the ring in January. He had a 4-by-8-foot banner with "Will you marry me?" printed on it, and had it sent to the summit with the crew, who agreed to drop it where Tasha would see it at the summit.
He bought flowers. And a cake. O'Kelly planned every detail of their getaway from their home in Philadelphia.
But one thing you can't plan for is the weather on Mount Washington.