Recently Ringed: Leslie Pinkston, 32, and Duane Gill, 35

 In Feature, Style

These St. Louis couples share their engagement stories.

How We Met: Duane and I met in grade school in the late 1980s through Duane’s cousin Kasey. Kasey and I attended the same grade school (Cathedral School). We were neighbors, and Duane would visit Kasey during summer vacation. Our childhood crush developed into a high school relationship until Duane graduated from Webster Groves High School and went to Florida A&M University. Two years later I graduated from Rosati-Kain High School and went onto Hampton University. We didn’t keep in contact while we were in college. Upon graduation, I moved to Washington, D.C. and Duane stayed in Florida for graduate school in 2000. Seven years later, I was planning to move back to St. Louis (Leslie is Chief Operating Officer for Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri) and sent out a mass email to reconnect with old friends. Duane (Social Worker, St. Patrick Center) responded to the email indicating that he, too, was back in St. Louis and when I returned, we reconnected and have been inseparable since.

The Proposal: I was out Christmas shopping and Duane called to ask if I wanted Chinese for dinner. I didn’t, so he said that he would get something for himself. Several hours later, I arrived home and we relaxed in front of the TV together. Duane went to the kitchen and came back with a few munchies, including two fortune cookies. He began to eat his snack and offered me a fortune cookie, but I said ‘no thanks.’ An hour later Duane again offered me a fortune cookie and said, “I am going to eat my fortune cookie, are you sure
you do not want one?” Again, I said ‘no’. He replied with, “well you should at least read your fortune.” I gave in and cracked open the fortune cookie—there was a neatly tucked note in one end of the cookie, opened it and read, “Duane will ask you to marry him.” Duane then got down on one knee and popped the question.

The Big Day:
August 21, 2010


Photos courtesy of the couple.

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