PRESQUE ISLE – A Maine graduating senior called to the commencement stage by the college’s president congratulated his peers and announced he had something important to do – leaving the stage to propose to his girlfriend in the stands.

University of Maine at Presque Isle officials say Timothy Babine prompted fine arts major and now fiancé Hayley Hamilton to burst into tears as he went down on one knee to pop the question on Saturday. Hamilton shook her head “yes,” and Babine placed an engagement ring on her finger. The crowd cheered.

He had prefaced the act by saying from the stage that “he had a special someone here” and something important to do.

College president Linda Schott had been in on the surprise, as was Babine’s family. Hamilton said she was stunned.

The University of Southern Maine, UMaine School of Law, St. Joseph’s College, UMaine System campuses and Unity College all held graduation ceremonies Saturday.

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