Topic: Health

Surprise marriage proposal at depression symposium

By Aroha Treacher
  • North Island: East Coast

Hastings man Ngaro Hape is inspiring others by sharing his story of overcoming depression after his 23-year marriage ended. While speaking at the Strongmen Symposium about depression, his new partner got quite the surprise when he proposed to her on stage.

Hape has come out the other side of depression and he's now helping others out of the darkness.

“Oh it's cool because I get little reminders by those that I support and I can kind of relate to their thinking and what they're going through and offer a suggestion and if I can't help them then connect them to the right people that can.”

The break up and loss of his children saw him spiral into depression. At the time, he didn't understand the signs or how to get help.

“I didn't understand about talking about it so I hit everything but once I opened up and spoke to people about it that I trusted or had my best interests at heart, things turned around from there.”

Life has continued forward for Hape as he surprised with partner with a marriage proposal at the Strongmen Symposium held in Hastings.

“Awesome actually, I had to hide everything away so I could get it ready to do the right thing and what better way than doing it here where I got help and also where we met, so yeah, cool.”

Hape’s new fiancé Tiara Williams share her thoughts on the proposal, “Yup really big day. I didn't think it was coming because he made a little bit of a joke, yup, I'll get that 18 months from now.”

The pair met here at Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga, and now have a wedding to look forward to.