Kiara and Dequaris

holding hands

How We Met: Dequaris and I met on April 13, 2009 outside of a National Pan-Hellenic Council meeting on the campus of The University of Alabama. I had just become a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated and he, at the time, had already been a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated for almost 2 years.

We greeted each other casually and that was that. Post graduation in 2010 for him and 2011 for me, we both moved to the state of Florida to accept job offers; however, it wasn’t until the summer of 2013 that we decided to pursue each other. The rest is history.

How He Asked: It all started on a Saturday afternoon. A movie, a visit to the Tampa Art museum, and a night on the town were on mine and Dequaris’ agenda. The movie of choice was “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”. After a few scenes, I realized that I had not yet seen “Captain America: The First Avenger”. I had gotten it confused with “Thor: The Dark World”.

An hour and a half into the movie, I began to get really frustrated because I needed a lot of the background information from the first movie in order to fully understand this one…and I REALLY needed to go to the little girl’s room. At that point, the movie was no longer enjoyable. More time passed by and before I knew it, it was 6:30. SIX THIRTY…a whole two and a half hours after the movie had started. Finally, the movie ended, I was able to use the restroom, and then we left the theatre. By then, going to the museum was the farthest thing from my mind, but Dequaris insisted that we still go.

We arrived in Downtown Tampa and parked on the campus of the University of Tampa. We began to walk towards the museum which, to me, seemed like miles away. The view, however, was breathtaking…the water, the skyline, the weather…all The proposalperfect. I began to complain about the walk because I had on heels. Being the gentleman that he is, he offered to carry me the rest of the way but I turned down his offer and told him to shut up. He responded with a smile because he knew that all of my complaining, nagging, and frustration would soon be overshadowed by a very special moment.

Eventually, we made it to the museum. I began to reach for the door handles to open the door when lo and behold, the museum was closed. By then, I was highly upset. He apologized and suggested that we just explore the riverwalk since we were already there. We began to walk down the museum steps toward the river and before long he slowed down and stopped in front of me.

He grabbed my hands and said, “You know how much I love you, right? Ever since you’ve been in my life, you’ve helped me become a better man and you’ve helped me view life from a different perspective. You know it’s really ironic that this morning you mentioned us leaving our mark here in Florida…well I’m here to let you know that we’ve left our mark.” He then pointed to a paver on the ground nearby. Before I could even read the engraving, I heard “Kiara Nicole Wilson…” and at that moment I knew what was happening. Cheesing like a Cheshire cat, I turned around and there he was on his knee asking me to honor him by being his wife.

the proposal full size

Pure joy

head to head

hand and head

the paver

the table

After I said “Yes! Of course! Yes!”, we heard cheers and applause from the playground area and someone said “Hey guys! Look over here!” It was the photographer he had hired to capture each and every moment.

Photos by: B&B Photography