An Eastbourne skater’s romantic marriage proposal was seen by thousands of people around the world when he surprised his wife-to-be at the Roller Derby World Cup finals.
Michelle and Russ Phillips, both members of the Bourne Bombshells roller derby team, had been working as match officials at the finals in Dallas.
Russ had arranged with event organisers to pop the question in the middle of the main arena on the final day of the competition in front thousands of roller derby fans from around the world.
Michelle said, “All of my friends were in on it, but I had no idea.”
“My friends tricked me into believing that I was working another game that day to get me to the arena – I was a little miffed at first when I realised I wasn’t.”
“You have to give my husband 10 out of 10 for style. A proposal in front of hundreds of people, streamed online to thousands of others worldwide and at the World Cup of the sport that we love so much. Our family is roller derby, so I loved that we could share our special moment with them.”
“It’s not every day you have a crowd that size all chanting ‘She said YES at you!”
The couple who had first met through a roller derby team in Birmingham five years ago, were married in Las Vegas the following week.
The couple were married in Las Vegas at the end of December 2014, a week after the Dallas finals.
Earlier this year the couple shared their story with British sweet makers Swizzels as part of a Valentine Day competition.
Michelle said, “It was such a unique proposal, something that was so special to us. When we heard about the Swizzels search for the sweetest proposal I just knew I had to enter – I knew no one would have a story quite like ours.”
Swizzels, who make Love Hearts, heard more than 700 proposal stories as part of the competition but picked Michelle and Russ for the top spot.
Sarah-Louise Heslop, marketing manager at Swizzels, said, “There were also some more bizarre stories - from someone who chucked the Argos catalogue at their partner, to drunken proposals in shopping trolleys. We even had one gentleman who bought his partner daffodils for the big moment only to find they were spring onions.
“It’s been heartwarming to hear all the fantastic ways that people have proposed and it made our decision process extremely tough; it was incredibly hard to pick one sweet proposal from all the brilliant entries. Thank you to everyone who got involved and shared their story.”
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