For six years, Paul Lovine and his girlfriend, Kat, have been flying between Burbank and Oakland to see each other as much as possible despite the distance. In the process, the couple has accumulated literally thousands of miles traveling the popular route, proving their loyalty to Southwest, and their love for one another. So, when Paul, who prefers to go by his middle name, was searching for the perfect way to ask his girlfriend of six years to be his wife, he knew Southwest would have to play a part in the big plan.
As Lovine puts it, “We’ve been doing this crazy commute for so long, I knew it would be appropriate to ‘end’ it where it meant the most for us--on the long-awaited weekend flight to see each other.”
So begins the story of Lovine’s elaborate plan to propose to Kat at 30,000 feet in the air, onboard Flight #2363 from Oakland to Burbank. Kat was traveling the ever-familiar route to see her boyfriend for the weekend. But what she didn’t know was that Lovine was already onboard the flight, waiting to surprise her with the big question. To Lovine, the plan to propose onboard a Southwest plane was the perfect end to the long-distance relationship, and the beginning of a lifetime.
“Southwest has been instrumental in sustaining our relationship,” said Lovine. “In the years we've been together, we've amassed thousands of miles, traveling between Oakland and Burbank. And when they started to allow pets onboard a few years ago, it enabled the three of us (Kat, Lovine, and their dog, Nickel) to safely and conveniently explore the northern and southern golden coasts.”
But, Lovine’s plan would never have worked without the LUV and understanding of Southwest Burbank Employees- and the Phoenix Inflight Crew (our special thanks to J.D., Lisaana, Gloria, Luisa, Valeria, and Steve). Busy preparing for the big question, Lovine missed his originally scheduled flight to Oakland, and the rest of the flights to Oakland were overbooked for the day. Luckily, the Southwest Team stepped in to intervene and help the day run smoothly. Lovine was able to secure a seat on a flight to Oakland, landing in the gate adjacent to where Kat was waiting to board her flight to Burbank. With the help of Southwest Burbank Employees, Lovine stealthily boarded the plane before general boarding, and hid in the back row, out of Kat’s view.
“There were several hoops and hurdles that the Southwest Team helped me cross, as soon as I got into the airport for the greatest ‘gig’ of my life,” Lovine explained. “Apart from helping us be together on weekends, the Southwest Family pulled me through this important day, and I am forever grateful for all the help everyone gave me that day.”
Once the flight reached cruising altitude, Lovine emerged from the back of the aircraft, guitar in play, and coaxed Kat awake. After serenading her with the lyrics to a favorite Beatles song, “Real Love,” Lovine got down on one knee, right in the middle of the aisle next to row five. In perfect timing, Nickel popped up with Kat’s ring resting in a custom-made Southwest pillbox stewardess hat. And after six wonderful years of long distance, Lovine and Kat became engaged at 30,000 feet.
As Lovine put it, “I really do think [Southwest] is the greatest team on the planet, and that’s also part of the reason why I wanted to share this beautiful story. Kat and I fell in love, and you guys are part of it.”
They don’t call us the LUV airline for nothing, and we’re pleased to have played such an integral role in the LUV story of two of our most loyal Customers (and their dog!).
Best wishes for the future, Lovine and Kat, and we hope to welcome both of you and Nickel onboard for many years to come!
Click here to see more pictures from the proposal.