Pennsylvania teens Mary Lapkowicz and Ben Moser have a special bond that dates back to elementary school.
During the fourth grade, Ben developed a friendship with Mary, who has Down syndrome.
Their teacher, Tracey Spogli, even noticed how he would go out of his way to include Mary in games and activities.
“He watched over her constantly,” Spogli told The Patriot-News. “If she was looking like she wasn’t having fun, he would go over and talk to her. He would pull her in to whatever activity they were doing. He just always watched out for her.”
At the end of the school year, Ben saw his cousin’s prom walk and told his mom that he would one day ask his friend Mary to prom.
But in the sixth grade, Mary switched school districts and she didn t see Ben for years.
When their two schools faced off on the football field, Ben, who is a quarterback for Susquehanna Township High School, saw his old friend and remembered his promise.
“She talked about going to prom,” Mary’s father told the Patriot-News. “I’d taken her to homecoming and stuff, but she had prom on her mind all along.”
Ben crafted a surprise promposal complete with balloons.
“I was surprised,” Mary said. “I was going to go with some friends.”
The 17-year-olds attended prom together on Friday, and Ben told the news outlet that differences shouldn’t serve as a “barrier” between friends.
“You should just be who you are and do what’s right,” he said.