Fans in attendance for Valparaiso Men’s Basketball “Senior Night” last Saturday were treated to an extra special surprise when Senior Forward, Vashil Fernandez, suddenly dropped to a knee. But this time it wasn’t to huddle up around Coach Bryce Drew; he was proposing at half-court to his now fiancée, Bridget Eichner.
And as the last sentence subtly suggests: she said “I do”.
Fernandez had this day dreamed in his head since long before Senior Night, but there was no other place and no other time that felt as right to him than that night.
“I had started planning (the proposal) over the summer,” Fernandez told Ideas In Motion Media. “But Senior Night had always been the plan.”
But it wasn’t until Eichner’s family came to visit Bridget and Vashil in October that everything truly began falling into place and Vashil got the blessing to steam ahead with the proposal.
“I talked to (Eichner’s) parents at first, and then the rest of her family,” Fernandez added. “They all loved the idea of doing it at Senior Night.”
After that, much like in basketball, all Fernandez had left to do was take his shot.
When Senior Night finally came around, only Eichner’s family, Coach Drew, and Fernandez’s teammates, who had caught on to what was about to occur, knew what was about to happen. Bridget and the rest of those in attendance at “The ARC” had no idea that they were soon to be witnesses to something magical.
As for Vashil, when the moment finally came around he wasn’t nervous at all.
“I’m a people person,” Fernandez said.
But for Bridget, it wasn’t as easy to stand in front of a crowd knowing all the teary eyes were on her.
“She was a little upset at first,” Vashil admitted with a slight chuckle. “But in the end she really loved it.”
In terms of future plans for the happy couple, Fernandez says the wedding plans have been on Bridget and his mind, but right now he plans to focus on completing this special season the Crusaders are having in their own right this year.
Congratulations, Vashil and Bridget. Here’s to many years of happiness and love.