They told me this story in May, though I have been picking their brains for extra details ever since then.
Dad was living with Uncle Lloyd at the time. Lloyd and Leona were in the upper part of this house, and Dad was living in the basement. Dad said the other day that he was not as close to Charlie, but he had spent some time with Lloyd when Lloyd was living in California, and when they came out to Utah, they invited him to live in their basement-- so he did, and that's where he was living when he proposed to Nana.
First of all, Mom remembered that Grandma (my dad's mom) had come down from Idaho and had given Dad this ring which was in a ring box, inside of a sock. Mom remembers Grandma handing it to Dad. It was a ring which had belonged to Grandma, on to which Grandma's dad (my dad's Grandpa Taylor) had superglued a beautiful polished rock which they called an apache tear. Grandpa Taylor had collected rocks like that for years, and polished them, and Mom has several now which she got when Grandma died and which she plans to pass on to the kids and grandkids sometime.
So, Mom knew that Dad had this heirloom ring which had belonged to his mom, and they were in the kitchen at that house that he and Lloyd were sharing-- no wait, Dad thought it was on the steps outside. Mom was sure it was in the kitchen. At any rate, it was in the place he was sharing with Lloyd at the time, and he handed her the ring box...
"Did you take it out of the sock?" I asked. And they both had to think about it.
Yes. They did both stop to think about it, but they were both sure. He definitely took it out of the sock. And he asked her if she would keep it for him, and she knew that this was his way of asking her to marry him.
And that was the end of the story. "Did you say yes?" I asked her. Of course she agreed to, but she didn't know the exact words she used. She said that she didn't wear that ring much, because the setting was a little loose and she didn't want the other stones in it to fall out.
Later, I asked them about the "real" engagement ring. I knew that there was a diamond ring involved somewhere. They said that there were a couple of brothers in their ward (literally, these guys were brothers, not just in the "in the ward" sense) who had gone to Belgium on their missions, and they had decided to start up a diamond business. They had a guy in Belgium who could send them diamonds, and they had a diamond safe in their apartment. My parents went and picked out the stone they wanted (my parents being, like, their third customer ever), and then sent the stone to Salt Lake, to the O.C. Tanner Company, to be set in to a ring.
And the name of the brothers? They were the Wilsons, of Wilson Diamond (as far as I can tell, as prosperous a diamond company as any in the Provo area).
Since the time when my parents became engaged, my family has become much more aware of the issue of how much blood is on the hands of diamond companies, and several of us are just fine with dispensing with the "tradition" of diamond-giving which has been carefully built by advertising; but it is kind of nice to know that we were part of the beginning of a local company.