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Bow Bridge Engagement Proposal: Whitney and Shawn

Who says happily-ever-afters can only be found in fairytales? On a spontaneous and surprise trip to New York, Shawn and Whitney found theirs when he dropped down to one knee and asked her to marry him. 
 Not only were we honored to have the opportunity to capture such an amazing proposal, but the newly-engaged couple shared with us how their two paths crossed and, eventually, how they fell in love.

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New York City Engagement Photography Shawn - 3
We asked Whitney to share with us how they met, and the moment in which they knew that they had found the one.
She says, “Shawn and I met years ago at Myrtle Beach. We had a lot of the same mutual friends, so we’d see each other out, occasionally. Eventually, I moved back home to Virginia to grow my clothing boutique and didn’t see him for a while. On April 2nd, we both attended a mutual friend’s wedding, Evan and Courtney. Not knowing either of us would be there, we are so thankful for not only their marriage, but that we were both able to attend.  I loved who Shawn was as a person (and the way others would talk/talk about him). We had known each other for a few years and, whenever I’d see him out, he was always so handsome and had the most beautiful smile. He was so pleasant to be around and always made sure everyone around him was having the best time.  To say that when I did see him out my heart skipped a beat would be an understatement.”
 New York City Marriage Proposal Shawn - 8
“We both literally knew we were going to spend the rest of our life with each other from the moment we “re-saw” each other at Evan and Courtney’s wedding. I can remember going to the bathroom right after their ceremony, and when I came out, Shawn was coming out of the men’s restroom. We hugged and chatted for a minute and, then, I walked over to my brother and said “He is the man I am going to marry one day.”  He literally TOOK MY BREATH AWAY. A few drinks later (haha) and a pep talk from my brother, I got up enough courage to ask Shawn to dance with me. He grabbed my hand and took me to the dance floor, and spun me around for the next 3 hours! “Purple Rain” was the very first song we ever danced to and, for months after, we would hear that song in the most random places. We’d always laugh and dance a little, because it’d take us back to the BEST night of our life.”
 New York City Proposal Ideas Shawn - 23
We asked Shawn the meaning behind his proposal, what inspired him to surprise her with a trip to New York, and why he chose to do it at Bow Bridge.
He says, “Whit had always told me she dreamed of a winter, NYC proposal, as NYC is her favorite place to visit. I would tell her that wasn’t ever going to happen, because I could never make it a surprise (but boy did I!). Whitney and I always talked about our (one day) son, Bo, and when I was communicating with James (of Paparazzi Proposals) trying to decide on a place, I knew immediately “Bow Bridge” in Central Park was where I would ask her to be my wife. I wanted to make sure I made all her dreams come true (and then some). Whitney’s mom and brother played a big part in planning the proposal. She was supposed to fly to Myrtle Beach (she lives in Virginia and I live in South Carolina) December 9th for my company’s Christmas party. Luckily her car was in South Carolina, so her mom was taking her to the airport that morning. I drove to Virginia the night before to surprise her at the airport the next morning. The very first time I told her I loved her, I picked her up from the airport in South Carolina and had a sign that said “Ms. Rife” and when I flipped it over it said, “I love you”. So it was only fitting when I jumped out from the delta sign, I was holding a sign that said “New York?” With the help of Karen and Brennan, we were able to totally surprise her, although she almost froze to death because she thought she was coming to Myrtle Beach for the weekend.”
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