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'In Heaven Together': Crash Killed Recently Engaged Couple

Michael Myvett proposes to Mattison Haywood in Paris. The two were chaperones on the bus carrying high school students to Humboldt State University when it was hit by a FedEx tractor trailer Thursday night. They were both killed in the crash.
Michael Myvett proposes to Mattison Haywood in Paris. The two were chaperones on the bus carrying high school students to Humboldt State University when it was hit by a FedEx tractor trailer Thursday night. They were both killed in the crash. via TODAY

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He got down on one knee in front of the Louvre Museum in Paris last Christmas Day.

Beaming in teal platform shoes, she said yes — and college sweethearts Michael Myvett and Mattison Haywood left their romantic trip ready to start the next promising phase of their lives.

But it all came to a tragic end when the pair was killed Thursday in a fiery bus crash in Northern California.

Those who were close to them described two young people in love, with a passion for helping others.

“He touched a ton of people,” said Ramona Ojala of her friend, Myvett, 29, who was chaperoning the trip with his bride-to-be to their alma mater, Humboldt State University.

Myvett met Haywood, 25, in 2011 at the college they were heading to when their lives ended too soon.

After graduation, Haywood was studying to become a doctor while Myvett worked as a therapist at the Center for Autism and Related Disorders.

“He was able to connect with our kids on a level few others could and he contributed to their well-being in such a positive and profound way,” the center said in a statement.

Kyle Farris, a supervisor at the Center for Autism, told The Associated Press that Myvett bonded seamlessly with the kids he worked with because he was “a child at heart.”

“This couldn’t have happened to a nicer person,” said Ojala, who described her college pal as “goofy and funny.”

Ojala said she will most miss Myvett’s smile, on grand display in a picture of the happy couple scattered on dozens of friends’ and relatives’ social media pages on Saturday.

On that same picture, posted by Haywood in December to announce their engagement, Myvett commented, "She was mad at me cause I wanted her to wear those shoes and her feet were hurting. I remember her saying, 'omg are you serious? Is this happening?'"

"Michael loved Mattison since even I could remember, even before their courtship," Davonna Foy, a friend of the couple, told NBC Southern California.

"Had only one of them survived, the other would be an absolute wreck because they were two peas in a pod," Haywood's father, John Haywood, told NBC Southern California.

“They're in heaven together,” a friend of the couple, Sandra Aispuro, wrote on a fund page set up to help with Myvett’s funeral arrangements.

“That was the love of his life," Farris said.

—Elisha Fieldstadt

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