Matthew and I had been dating for over 3 years. After our 3 year anniversary, I told him several times that I didn’t want wait forever for him to propose. My grandpa always said, "either pee or get off the pot." I did want a romantic and spontaneous story to tell, but I was getting impatient. We were about to hit our 4 year anniversary mark on Tuesday, August 28, 2001, and I still hadn’t had a proposal.
I received a job offer clear across the country, in Los Angeles, for a position that offered me higher income and a fresh new start.
After talking to Matthew about the offer, he asked me not to leave, but when our anniversary had passed and he still hadn’t given me a reason to hang around, I decided it was time to go.
I took the offer, and my new company was paying for my flight. I was to fly out of Dulles Airport on September 11, 2001. Flight 77 with America Airlines. I will never forget it.
I had my best friend, Jacqi, drive me to the airport because after I broke it off with Matthew a week before, I figured it’d be too hard to see him again. It was already hard enough.
It was 7:30 a.m on 9/11 and I was walking through the airport to my gate. My phone started ringing, and I saw it was Matthew. I figured I should atleast say goodbye…
I answered the phone and heard, "Baby, I know you want to take this job, and I’m happy for your opportunity, but atleast come say goodbye."
I replied, "Matthew, I’m already at the airport, I can’t turn around now."
Matthew responded, " I’m outside by the luggage check in, please come back out."
I had about 40 minutes before my plane was scheduled to take off so I went out. I figured it would just be a tear jerker, but I still loved him and wanted a proper send off. I walked outside and there he was.
He looked aweful. He was wearing his worn out plaid pajamas and had bags under his eyes. His hair was unbrushed and his beard was growing in. I walked over to him and he hugged me tighter than I’ve ever been held.
"Matthew, what’s wrong with you?"
"Jill, please, I’m begging you now, more than ever, not to leave me."
Matthew dropped to his knee and looked up at me with sleep deprived eyes and a quiver in his chin and said he didn’t sleep all week. Out of his coat pocket, he pulled out a small black box that held a beautiful platinum ring, with a princess cut diamond. He told me he was waiting for Christmas, but now it was time. Matthew simply said, "Jill, I love you with my whole heart, you are the one for me. I will die if you get on this plane and leave me, please marry me."
I cried harder than I could remember, at that point. I told him yes, and we retrieved my bags and drove home. We realized later that day, when Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon, that I would’ve died if I got on that plane. He saved my life.
Proposal Story by: