It’s still a fairy tale ending, but it required a little editing.
Twitter let out a collective “Aww!” this weekend when the New York Police Department announced it had found an engagement ring that a man accidentally dropped through a Times Square sidewalk grate after proposing to his girlfriend.
On Saturday, the NYPD put out an all points Twitter bulletin seeking the woeful groom.
“WANTED for dropping his fiancée’s ring in Times Square! She said Yes- but he was so excited that he dropped the ring in a grate,” the NYPD News tweeted Saturday. ” … Officers rescued it & would like to return it to the happy couple.”
Video accompanying the tweet showed the couple reacting. The man dropped to his belly to peer through the grate as the woman squatted beside him.
It had the makings of the ultimate feel-good holiday yarn, and while Twitter scrambled to find the couple, CNN and other media outlets led their stories with some iteration of, “First he got down on one knee, then he was sent scrambling on his hands and knees.”
The next day, the NYPD announced that, with the help of social sleuths assisting in the multinational probe, it had found the victims of the matrimonial miscue — who it identified as John and Daniella — at home in the United Kingdom.
“We would like to thank everyone who shared this story!” the department tweeted. “The (now) happy couple is back in their home country, but thanks to your retweets they heard we were looking for them! We’re making arrangements to get them their ring back. Congratulations!”
Twitter did what Twitter does, of course, so while it helped find the couple, it also mercilessly mocked the man for his clumsiness and his decision to propose over one of the city’s sidewalk grates, which are known for gobbling up pedestrians’ belongings.
That’s when the truth started trickling out via the Twitter feeds John Drennan and Daniella Anthony apparently created Sunday to express their grate-fulness (sorry, couldn’t be helped) to the NYPD for its officers’ noble efforts. CNN could not immediately reach the couple for comment.
While it’s correct that two detectives with the NYPD emergency services unit kept searching after Drennan and Anthony had given up hope and walked off without giving officers their names, how the ring ended up in the city’s bowels Friday is another story.
“He proposed in Central Park but the ring was slightly too big and fell off,” Anthony explained in one post. “So happy it’s been found we can’t believe it.”
Added Drennan, “Spent ages trying to find and police stopped me from physically climbing down the drain! So so happy to have ring back! God bless America!”
He also sent thanks to “a special little girl who gave my fiancé a big hug… So much love for NYC!”
Not even the torrent of Twitter trolls accusing them being dummies or impostors could sour the moment. In response to a Twitter user suggesting he was a bot because he had so few followers, Drennan explained, “Friend made us aware, we weren’t on Twitter… Needless to say we are now huge fans!!”
Drennan and Anthony said they would give the officers a mention at their wedding, and they’ll be returning to New York to lift a pint with the detectives.
“Gents, I cannot thank you enough, although I will try,” Drennan tweeted. “A few cold beers when we come back to NYC! We are completely overwhelmed and you will definitely get a mention at our wedding! Thank you again!”
By Eliott C. McLaughlin and Madeline Holcombe, CNN