There were plenty of cheers and tears – and even a surprise proposal – as HMCS Fredericton arrived back in Halifax following a six-month mission overseas.

Hundreds of friends and family members, many of whom held brightly-coloured signs, lined the dock to welcome HMCS Fredericton and its sailors back to port Tuesday morning.

Among them was Misty Carpenter, who greeted her boyfriend with a hug and a kiss as he descended the stairs of the navy frigate.

As Sub-Lt. James Adams removed his hat and bent down on one knee, Carpenter clapped her hand over her mouth in shock.

She shook her head ‘yes’ and held out her hand as Adams pulled a shiny ring from a small red box, which he had been keeping under his hat.

The newly-engaged couple then embraced to thunderous applause and cheers from the crowd and posed for photos.

“We’ve been together for five years. I planned this basically as soon as I left. I knew right away that I wanted to propose to her when I got home so I bought the ring overseas and now we’re here,” said Adams after the proposal.

“All the boys inside have been rousing me for the last little bit because everybody’s known that I planned this. Everybody made sure I was wearing my whites here today, so, glad to be home.”

“I’m overwhelmed. There’s a lot of emotions going on,” said Carpenter. “I don’t know, I’ve been looking forward to this day and this just made it so much better.”

HMCS Fredericton left Halifax on Jan. 5 to take part in Operation Reassurance, a NATO-led mission in the Mediterranean and Black seas.

The mission was prompted by Russian action against Ukraine in 2014.