Leap of faith: Woman asks blind lover for hand in marriage on special day

When 49-year-old Linda Petri popped the question to her boyfriend on February 29, she was taking a leap of faith in more ways than one.

On the one day of the year when women are traditionally allowed to propose, Linda got down on her knee to ask Richard Boulton, 59, for his hand in marriage.

But in an unusual twist, the former call centre worker also had to tell him exactly what her intentions were - because Richard is blind.

Retired Romford Asda receptionist Richard said: “I’d just finished my lunch when she said ‘I’ve got a question to ask you and I’m down on one knee.

“I burst into tears. I’d been feeling a bit emotional anyway after my last day at work. When I did regain my composure I said yes.”

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He added that the leap year proposal made it “absolutely more special.”

The couple has been together for two years and Richard, originally from Romford and now living in Chelmsford, admitted “we don’t do things conventionally”.

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Richard, who has been blind since birth, said: “Linda kept joking that ‘Wednesday is a special day isn’t it.’

“We had discussed it before but I think you can safely say it was a surprise.”

The shock proposal came as Richard retired from the Asda store in Mercury Gardens. His special send-off saw generous colleagues organise the motorbike ride of his dreams.

He said: “We were discussing red-letter days (special days) and some people at work said they’d like to drive a ferrari. I said I’d like to do a trip in a Harley Davidson, which is exactly what they orgainsed for me.”

Richard and Linda were then whisked off in the retro motorbike.

They still haven’t set a date for the big day, though Richard is now keen on arriving in style in a vintage car.

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