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The Journals are the premier publications for high-quality, hyperlocal news and advertising in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Dec 02, 2019

Halftime Proposal Steals the Show at Thanksgiving Game

Greg Casha and Cristina Fox

Thanksgiving Day high school football games are typically full of rival teams, fanfare and bragging rights. However, this year’s annual Middletown High School South’s game against Middletown High School North, though victorious against their rival with a 21-7 win, was full of love.

One Hazlet resident and teacher decided to make a momentous memory of his own during the halftime show, by getting down on one knee and proposing to his longtime girlfriend. Greg Casha, 34, made a memory of lifetime by asking Cristina Fox, 30, of Leonardo, to be his wife in front of their family and friends — and  a few thousand football fans — at the annual Thanksgiving Day game.  It seemed like the perfect opportunity for Casha, considering Fox is the varsity cheerleading coach at Middletown South.

“This year was a little bit more special of a game in that it is her last year of coaching,” Casha said. “It made it more emotional for her and her athletes. It was a  no-brainer decision.”

The plan of proposing during this special game was developed from day one. Fox has been the varsity cheerleading coach for several years now, and Casha knows that she becomes all-consumed with the Thanksgiving Day game each year, which was the perfect distraction for him to get the ring. Casha said the only “stress” of the entire event was finding the right jewelry.

“Cristina only wears one ring that is never taken off,” he said. “Making sure it was the right size is what made me nervous most of all.”

He conjured up the idea of getting Fox’s friends involved by having her try on rings during a shopping spree.

“The biggest thing I was nervous about was that I would put the ring on at the game, and it would stop at her knuckle.”

Well, the diamond ring didn’t stop at her knuckle, but instead fit perfectly on his fiancée’s finger. Casha surprised his bride-to-be on the South High School football field just prior to her cheerleaders taking the stage for their big halftime performance. However, his plan — having her senior cheerleaders circled around him when Fox returned from the music booth to set up her team’s performance audio — didn’t go perfectly. What did transpire was more than what he could have imagined. The senior cheerleaders ended up lining up along a makeshift runway, holding signs while Casha situated himself at the end, kneeling and ready to pop the question.

“Seeing her expression and look on her face when she finally realized [what was happening] will be forever ingrained in my head,” he said.

Casha and Fox are both high school teachers at their respective alma maters (Raritan for Casha, Middletown South for Fox). They met three years ago while working their summer employments at the Monmouth Beach Bathing Pavilion. Shortly after, a first date at Tommy’s in Sea Bright was in the works, and as you may say — the rest is history.

Koufax and Griffey

After purchasing their first home last year in Hazlet, they started a family of their own by rescuing two beautiful American Staffordshire Terriers, Koufax and Griffey. The couple plans to relax and enjoy this wonderful moment, spend their first holiday together as an engaged couple and hope to have a summer/fall 2021 wedding.