Mike and I are both from Chicago, and although we have also lived in Columbus, St. Louis, and now Denver, Chicago will always be home and where we started dating.
On August 26, 2016, we were flying from Denver, Colorado to Columbus, Ohio on Southwest Flight #2976 for a friend's wedding. As I checked us in for the flight I noticed that Mike was in an earlier boarding group, but I did not think much of it. Mike boarded the plane early and got us a whole row to ourselves. With forty-five minutes left in the flight the Captain announced that we were crossing over the Mississippi River into Illinois. I was busy getting some last minute work done before we landed, that I didn't notice that Mike had other plans.
Soon after the Captain's announcement, Mike sidled up to me across the empty middle seat and started talking about how important it was to him that we get engaged in Illinois. He explained how we had traveled and moved a lot and were finally beginning to feel settled after five years. He told me how we wanted to propose in Illinois before we relocated to Denver, but the ring was not ready. Right at that moment he pulled out the ring box, 37,000 feet above Illinois and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him!
After hyperventilating and saying, "Yes!" the Flight Crew was standing over us applauding, and the Captain changed the over head lights from blue to pink and announced our engagement over the loud speaker.
I later learned that Mike had purchased a Business Select fare so he could get on the plane early in order to explain his plan to the Crew, get us our own row, and establish the “Mississippi” signal with the Captain so he knew when we were entering Illinois ... all before I even boarded. It was absolutely a flight to remember and extremely special how he incorporated all of the cities we have shared together! We will be forever thankful to the Flight Crew for making the day so festive and helping us celebrate the moments after we got engaged!