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Two-Time Plane Crash Survivor Austin Hatch Proposes to Longtime Girlfriend: ‘She Said Yes!’

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In March, two-time plane crash survivor and former star basketball player Austin Hatch told PEOPLE he was in love and planned to propose to Abby Cole, his girlfriend of over two years.

And when Cole, 21, graduated from the University of Michigan on Saturday, he did it.

And, appropriately, it was on a basketball court.

“Thought this would be a nice graduation present,” Hatch, 22, wrote on Twitter. “She said Yes!”

She was just as excited, posting the news on Twitter, which he retweeted: “Abigail Hatch has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?”

The couple plans to marry next summer after Hatch graduates from college, they told a local TV station.

“I knew I was going to marry her after the first day we hung out together,” he told WZZM 13 on Saturday.

She says she felt the same way.

“Right away I had a different feeling about him too, a really special one,” Cole told the outlet.

That was two-and-a-half years ago when they met in a political science class, he told the station. Cole played volleyball at the University of Michigan. Hatch used to play basketball for the university, but he is now a manager so he can focus on his studies.

Hatch survived a 2003 plane crash that killed his mother and two siblings but spared him and his father, Stephen, an anesthesiologist. He then survived a 2011 plane crash that took the lives of his father and stepmother.

Hatch says he knows his family approves of Cole.

“I know for a fact that they’re so proud of me and they’re so proud and so honored to have Abigail as a part of our family,” he told WZZM-13. “She challenges me to honor my family every day and she makes me better.”