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Asking his date to the prom, Canyon High senior stages the event at the mall to pop the question


Posted: April 20, 2014 2:00 a.m.
Updated: April 20, 2014 2:00 a.m.

Canyon High senior asks his girlfriend to the prom by staging a surprise event at the mall to pop the question. Robert Strand/ Courtesy photo

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John Paul Carmona ("JP"), a senior at Canyon High School and member of the marching band, wanted to ask his girlfriend Destiny Hernandez to the upcoming prom.

He didn't want the usual. He wanted romantic. He wanted big.

So JP went to management at the Westfield Valencia Town Center and received permission to do something that had never been done there before.

He then created a huge banner which read "Destiny will you go to the prom with me?" and spoke to Sylvano, his fellow band member friend, about playing his trumpet at the event.

Next on JP’s list was a gorgeous bouquet of roses and a candy lei.

Arrangements were made secretly with Destiny's mother to get her to ride down the escalator at 6 p.m. on April 3.

The date came quickly and several of JP’s band member friends met at the center of the mall to rehearse how it would be done.

His eight year old brother would accompany him holding the lei, and they would hide inside a store nearby.

At 5:45 p.m. we received word that Destiny and her mother were early, and about to enter to mall.

Everybody panicked and took their places. By this time, some 100 bystanders had heard the buzz, and stopped their shopping to see it all go down.

Destiny soon entered the mall, with her mother secretly videotaping the entire event as she rode down the escalator.

Halfway down, the trumpet blasted out something like they play at the beginning of the horse races, and a group of kids popped up on the second floor, hanging the banner over the railing - asking Destiny for a date to the prom.

She put her hands up to her mouth in shock. People were yelling, kids were screaming, and by the time she reached the bottom, she couldn't walk. She just stood there frozen staring at the sign.

John – JP - and his brother walked out to meet her, presenting her with flowers. Destiny tried not to cry.

John then asked her to the prom, but she didn't answer. She was speechless. A crowd had gathered.

Finally she said "Yes."

John yelled out to everybody, "She said yes!" and a big cheer went up.

People were clapping and moms were crying. It seemed magical, like we were in a movie. We thanked everyone for their help, took more pictures, and left.

I noticed Destiny never put the flowers down, so I think everyone felt it was a romantic evening.

Editor’s Note: JP and the other graduating seniors at Canyon High School enjoyed their prom yesterday, Saturday, April 19.


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