It was the crossword puzzle fan's version of getting his marriage proposal plastered on a stadium Jumbotron.

Aric Egmont and Jennie Bass were working on a puzzle titled "Popping the question" in the latest issue of The Boston Globe Sunday magazine. Bass spotted her sister's name and her best friend's name, but initially thought it was just a coincidence.

Then they got to 111 across: "Generic proposal" (Jen + Aric generic). The answer: "Will you marry me?"

"We get to the `Will you marry me?' clue, and I said, `Will you marry me, Jenny?' I got up, got the ring, and got down on one knee and she screamed, and hugged me. It took her a minute to say yes," Egmont told the Globe.

Egmont, 29, of Cambridge, contacted the magazine this summer to ask if the people who create the crossword puzzles would write a special puzzle for him.

Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon, a married puzzle-writing team who have been writing Globe magazine crossword puzzles for years, agreed. Their puzzle included several variations on proposals; for example, "Macrame artist's proposal" was "Let's tie the knot."

The tricky part was writing an entire puzzle that would be clear to the happy couple, but not obscure to all the other readers who do the puzzles.

Bass, 29, said there was no reason for her to suspect anything when they started doing the puzzle.

"Then he got up and came back with a box and it was pure elation," she said.