Cory Huston and Avarice Guerrero, the military couple who became engaged last week, have said their engagement sends a message to gay troops.

The proposal is believed to be the first to take place on a military base between two members of the same sex.

Huston, who in 2006 was drummed out of the Navy for violating “Don't Ask, Don't Tell,” greeted his Marine boyfriend at Camp Pendleton as he returned home from a 10-month deployment in Afghanistan with a hug and a marriage proposal.

Appearing on CNN, Guerrero said he thought Huston was breaking up with him because he first asked him to take off his promise ring.

“Once he got down on one knee, I literally started thinking, like, 'Is he serious? Is he really going to ask me to marry him after everything we've been through?'”

Huston said the proposal sends a positive message to young gay troops.

“It's important to us 'cause we got engaged. But it's also important because there's young gay people coming out of boot camp who, even though it's okay to be gay in the military there's still a stigma and I want them to be like, 'Ok, well other people have done it, so I don't have to be ashamed of who I am.' I spent too many years being ashamed of who I was and trying to be someone I wasn't. In a way we are trying to send a message saying that it's okay.”

The couple added that they are in no rush to marry.