Tornadoes in Texas generally don’t have a happy ending, certainly not one with a ring and a proposal. But we’re here to tell you a storm story with a heavy dash of romance.
Maybe Mother Nature is a big fan of the Hallmark Channel because this Texas tornado tale is destined to be a movie.
And it all involves a couple, an EF3 tornado, and a junior college softball team. First, let’s set the scene. An intense tornado swept through Lamar County in far Northeast Texas late last week. The tornado flattened the home where Dakota Hudson and Lauren Patterson lived. The couple lost most everything. But Patterson had no idea that Hudson also had hidden away an engagement and wedding ring he’d bought for her. Presumably, that jewelry was gone as well.
In an interview with local media, Hudson said he broke it to Patterson what else was in the house: “I told her, I was like, ‘I lost your engagement ring and your wedding band,’ and she told me it was alright. All she needed was me.”
All together now, that is so sweet and exactly what one should say when faced with such property loss. You have each other.
But this is when the Paris Junior College softball team stepped in to help. The teammates were helping in storm cleanup. And they were more than happy to help make this tale of a Texas tornado have a Hallmark ending. So the women cleaned up debris and looked for the ring.
“When you tell 20 girls someone is going to get engaged if they find a ring,” Hudson said. “They are going to find it.”
Kate Rainey is one of those softball players. “I was just kind of digging through the mud in this certain particular spot, and I kept digging there. I don’t know why- I felt led to dig right there, and I found a little piece of a metal circle, and it was not metal. It was gold. I didn’t believe it. When I found it, I was like, ‘there’s no way I just found it.’”
Here’s how strange this Texas tornado got. These sorts of storms sometimes make no sense with their damage patterns. The tornado did suck out the ring from its hiding place in the closet. The winds pulled the ring from its box and moved it seven yards, while burying it underneath two inches of mud and debris.
As soon as he saw the ring, Hudson knew what he had to do. He dropped to a knee and proposed to his long-time girlfriend as the softball team cheered.
And what did Patterson say? Of course she said yes. Cue the kiss cam. “Finally you had a moment to smile, and it was a real smile,” Patterson said. “I couldn’t have asked for a better proposal.”
Yes, Mother Nature is a romantic.