Lions WR Golden Tate helped a veteran propose to his girlfriend (Shutdown Corner)

Thankfully, Golden Tate did not black out for this proposal, as he helped a couple get engaged last Sunday before the Detroit Lions played the San Francisco 49ers. Too bad the Pro Bowl receiver can’t remember his own proposal. In September, Tate proposed to girlfriend Elise Pollard by the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean. He had checked off all the boxes leading up to the big day, from asking his future father-in-law’s permission to personally designing the ring and planning out every detail for the big moment. His future wife is from San Diego and the Lions were playing at the Chargers in this season’s opener, so he decided the day before the game was the perfect time to get engaged. So the day before the game against the Chargers, Tate told Pollard that he missed the beach and wanted to see it again. In the weeks leading up to this big moment, she had been putting an all-out blitz on her boyfriend to ask for her hand in marriage. He already had a game plan that had been installed weeks before. But when the whistle blew, it was time to go with the flow. “I asked a complete stranger to take a picture for us, but whispered to the lady, ‘video this please’ and got down on one knee! I felt like I was down there forever! I had this huge speech thought out I’d gone over and over, I think I said a few things I wanted to, but I kinda blacked out,” Tate told Yahoo Sports. “She said yes which is all that matters.” But now Tate has gone from popping questions to playing Cupid. This past Sunday during pregame of the Lions game, Eric Gestring of Lansing, Mich. proposed to Darien Leigh Holden with a little help from Tate. Under the guise of going to the Lions game, Gestring was able to get Holden on the field (he had field passes). With a dozen or so family and friends watching from the first row, the couple took in the scene as Tate walked by and gave high-fives to the fans on the sideline watching pregame warmups. He stopped by and chatted with Gestring and Holden, eventually revealing placards with three others who were in on the proposal. The placards read ‘Will You Marry Me?’ Tate did not black out this time. He held the sign with a huge smile on his face, waiting for Holden to answer. “And there’s Eric’s down on one knee with the biggest smile on his face and of course that big amazing Ritani diamond shining bright in his hand,” Holden said. “I couldn’t believe it. It felt more like I was in a dream, then real life. Once I said yes I looked around and there were cameras everywhere, which I loved because I always used to say, ‘If I ever get engaged I hope my boyfriend will be smart enough to have a camera crew to capture the moment.’ I was so excited. Everyone was congratulating us and showing so much love and support. It was defiantly a great special moment and a day I’ll never forget. I kept telling Eric I hope when I wake up tomorrow this ring will still be on my finger and it’s not just a dream!” The proposal, including a ring provided by Ritani free at charge, happened through the efforts of the  Golden Future Foundation, which supports soldiers and veterans when they return home from active duty. It is a real passion for Tate and his fiancee. Gestring served six years on active duty in the Navy. Gestring and Holden met in June. On their first date Gestring told Holden about his father, who was battling cancer. He passed away in October and Gestring said that Holden “was by my side everyday throughout my father’s battle with cancer, reminding me to keep smiling for my dad and making the most of the time we had left.” He learned through the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America that Ritani, a jewelry company that specializes in engagement rings and wedding bands, wanted to help a veteran ready to get down on one knee and sign up for a lifetime of active duty (that’s a marriage joke). And then he got linked up with Tate’s foundation, all of which led to this past Sunday’s big moment. “We’re doing more than just writing a check to partnering organizations, but we’re actually building lifelong relationships,” Tate said. “By really engaging with local veterans and spending time with them, we’ve earned their trust and get to know more of the personal situations veterans are dealing with once returning home. “We’re able to be sensitive to certain areas that are uncomfortable for them. We’ve realized most veterans are just grateful to be home safe, and do not want handouts or charity. They’ve seen too much at war, and had too many close friends pass away, for them to think they deserve anything over another Veteran. We as an organization, had to approach them saying we want to honor them and thank them for their service, just to get interest from Veterans to hear us out versus any type of charity talk. It’s humbling for us to see how these men and women are still living out their lives selflessly, and to serve others.”    

from Yahoo Sports



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