If you keep up with the biggest news in the animal kingdom, you definitely know who Fiona is. The baby hippo, born six months premature at the Cincinnati Zoo in January, was the smallest hippo ever successfully delivered, and has been riding the wave of fame ever since. She has served as the inspiration for a children's book and a TV show, videos of her farting underwater garner tens of thousands of views, and now, she's facilitating love connections.
According to The Daily Buzz, when Nick Kelble decided to propose to his girlfriend, Hayley Roll, earlier this month, he did it during a trip to the Cincinnati Zoo in front of Fiona's tank at Hippo Cove. "We went to the zoo for our one-year anniversary, and Fiona was in the window," Roll told the outlet. "Nick, my boyfriend, and I were waiting in line to get our photo taken with Fiona, and I gave my cell phone to someone to take the photo, and when I turned back around, Nick was on one knee proposing."
Roll shared several of the photos from the happy day on Instagram with the caption, "We're so happy Fiona could be there on our special day ❤ here's to many more years of going to zoos with you 😙 ." The pictures show Kelble getting down on one knee, putting the ring on Roll's finger, and giving her a kiss. In all of them, Fiona floats perfectly between them in the background. In the final photo, the newly engaged couple crouch next to the tank for a close-up pic with Fiona, the real star of the show.
Roll told The Daily Buzz that nobody at the zoo knew about Kelble's engagement plans, and that it was pure luck that she had handed her camera to the stranger in line behind her just in time for the proposal. She also said that the day was extra special because it was their first time meeting Fiona in person. "We are huge #TeamFiona fans and have been following her since she was born," Roll said.
Kelble and Roll aren't the first couple to incorporate animals into their love story. The beluga whales at Connecticut's Mystic Aquarium have become notorious for photobombing outdoor weddings at the park, a couple's engagement photos went viral earlier this year when their 35-pound cat stole the show, and you can now even rent tuxedo-clad "wedding llamas" to add a little extra something to your wedding reception. "Party animal" just got a whole new meaning.