A self-described "hopeless romantic" donned a formal shirt, vest and tie and headed to the highway with a handmade sign last Sunday to panhandle for donations so he could buy an engagement ring for the love of his life.
Corey Fontenot had moved to Colorado from Louisiana two years ago, but had to leave his girlfriend, Lori, behind. The only way she would join him in Colorado is if they got married. Although he is gainfully employed, the enterprising young man didn't have enough money to purchase an engagement ring.
So, walking along the side of the highway and holding a sign that read, "In Love, Need Money for Ring, Anything Helps," Fontenot appealed to motorists in the Brookfield area, about 20 miles north of Denver.
By the end of his first day of panhandling, Fontenot had collected $80 and, more importantly, the attention of Denver's NBC television affiliate, 9News, which covered his story on last Sunday's news show and featured him on its website and Facebook page.
Only one day later, the 26-year-old's story would take a dramatic turn.
A local jeweler, Sonny's Diamonds and Jewelry, stepped in and donated a ring so Cory and Lori could proceed with their engagement. "They gave me an amazing ring and I plan on using it to propose to my girlfriend in October," he told 9News.
Fontenot, whose predicament and happy outcome went viral as it was picked up by the websites of Huffington Post and USA Today, said that his story shows girls everywhere that there are still hopeless romantics out there.