The similarities Matt Weiner shares with girlfriend Becca Pernikoff are many.
They’re the reason the 25-year-old from Chicago knew that Pernikoff is the woman he wants to spend the rest of his life with.
But the one thing that sets the couple apart is the only reason Weiner needed to enlist “Good Morning America’s Love Live” help for popping the question, in a big way.
“The one place where Becca and I are polar opposites is in celebrations,” he wrote in response to “GMA’s” call for men who wanted to make their marriage proposal an unforgettable and live TV event.
“I like to celebrate more low-key, and Becca would rather throw a huge, blowout party and invite the world,” Weiner explained.
“I want to prove to her that I have it in me to do something so extravagant that she would never think I would have the nerve to do,” he told “GMA.” “I think she is very concerned that when I finally do propose it will be very low-key and intimate.”
It turns out that Pernikoff, thanks to Weiner’s out-of-the-box thinking, had nothing to worry about.
The 25-year-old got the surprise of her life today when Weiner got down on bended knee and asked his girlfriend of three years to spend the rest of his life with him, at her office, on live TV, in front of millions of “GMA” viewers.
Appearing camera-ready for a national TV interview, Pernikoff took her place next to her boss at the Berman’s Infiniti of Chicago car dealership, where she works as a saleswoman, to be interviewed by “GMA’s” George Stephanopoulos.
The interview, believed by Pernikoff to be about car sales in Chicago, quickly veered off course when Stephanopoulos told her to, instead, look at the scene behind her.
Her mouth dropped as she saw, not only her entire family, but also three signs reading “Will,” “You,” and “Marry,” followed by Weiner, sitting in an Infiniti convertible with the word “Me” on the window, and holding a dozen roses.
All Pernikoff could say was, “Oh my gosh, oh my gosh, oh my gosh,” until, of course, she said yes to Weiner’s proposal.
Relationship Built on Love and Family
The sight of Weiner and Pernikoff surrounded by family after the proposal is not uncommon for the Chicago-based couple.
Family, Weiner told “GMA,” is something the couple’s relationship is built on.
“I love the way she puts family above everything else,” he said. “She came from a family with two older boys and she was the baby girl. I was the oldest child and had a younger brother and sister.”
For Weiner, the attraction to Pernikoff was instant, after they were first introduced by mutual friends three years ago.
“We started dating after college when one of my best friends from high school started dating one of her best friends from college,” he wrote in his submission to “GMA.” “The first time we talked on the phone I knew we were meant for each other.”
The fun-loving couple has had their share of good times together over the course of their relationship – from trips to Las Vegas, Anguilla and Florida to slow nights in watching their favorite show, “Modern Family” – but it was the most difficult time in Pernikoff’s life that cemented the couple’s future together.
Pernikoff’s father died unexpectedly in July of 2009 at the age of 57. His passing, Weiner said, gave their marriage proposal today even more meaning.
“The moment I knew I was going to spend my life with Becca was when I was driving to her old apartment to tell her that her dad passed away,” Weiner said. “I was on the phone with my dad and I was hysterical, telling him how scared I was that Becca was going to move back to be with her family and that I was going to lose the girl of my dreams.”
“My dad told me to relax and that everything would work itself out, and it has,” Weiner said.
Delivering the very public proposal Pernikoff dreamed of reminded Weiner of another reason he loves his bride-to-be so much.
“I love that she gets along great with anyone she meets and becomes best friends with everyone,” he told “GMA.” “Hence why she is planning on having close to 16 bridesmaids.
Certain to be included in the Pernikoff-Weiner wedding party are the two friends who introduced the couple three years ago.
But before they walk down the aisle themselves, Pernikoff and Weiner will have another wedding to attend, the April wedding of the matchmaker couple who introduced them.
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