SEATTLE, W.A. (WNCN) – An upset loss at home on Sunday to the Carolina Panthers meant the Seattle Seahawks were swept by the NFC South this season. But they weren’t the only ones swept off their feet at CenturyLink Stadium.
Long-time North Carolina resident and die-hard Panthers fan Levi Watterson was popped a question before he made it into the stadium to see his team, who made the cross-country trip to try and save its playoff hopes.
His now-fiancé, Winnie Cheung, has been planning a proposal since August and bought tickets to her now-fiancé’s favorite team’s game in September.
“I chose the Panthers game because it was part Levi and part me,” Cheung said. “I found tickets through my work and realized it would be the perfect place to propose.”
The two met in 2018 after Watterson moved to the Seattle area for work after living in North Carolina since 2006. Watterson is a customer and product specialist for Sherwin-Williams and Cheung is a recruiter.
“We met originally in the fall of 2018, but didn’t really hit it off,” Watterson said. “Then we reconnected a year later at the same bar when we ran back into each other. The vibe was different, I bought her a drink, somehow got her to agree to see a movie and go to dinner with me, and then she still agreed to date me even though I showed up to dinner late.”
Across the last four years the duo said they’ve done many things together, and then one day, while attending a friends baby shower, Cheung got the idea – and made the decision – she was going to plan the proposal.
“I got the idea while we were at a friends baby shower where the couple had the wife propose to the husband and I really liked it,” Cheung said. “The wife is super bad***. If she can propose, then why not? Why does the guy have to do it? Why can’t I just do it?”
So she said she really got down to planning.
Cheung said she told her sister first, but kept it tight-knit.
She ended up buying the ring in November and didn’t tell many people until Watterson was on a family trip to Minnesota in December.
“I took the ring all around Seattle and put it on different things and places to have fun,” Cheung said. “The person who we originally went to the baby shower for? The baby was born, and the baby wore the ring before Levi.”
Cheung said she ended up proposing outside the stadium prior to the game.
Not only do the Seahawks require you to buy a jumbotron slot, but they don’t allow proposals on-screen either.
Something Watterson said he was thankful for because “it would’ve been a lot of pressure with the whole stadium watching.”
Cheung made a face but said it was easier to hustle him to the game early any way.
“Winnie is not a person that wants to go early to anything. She’s the type of person that wants to get to the airport five minutes before the gates close,” Watterson said. “When she wanted to go to the stadium early I was like ‘alright’!”
But Watterson did say he was getting a little suspicious.
“She was being all hand-holdy and then led me off to the side without telling me what gate we were going into and I was like ‘huh, that’s interesting’,” he said. “She said ‘go stand over there, I want to take your picture.’ I turned around and her phone was away and her hand was in her pocket, and I was confused, and then she walked up to me starting to cry, and then at that point I knew something was up.”
Watterson said that’s when Cheung pulled out the box, told him how much she loved him and how she wanted to spend eternity with him.
“She got down on one knee, and honestly, I was just trying to pick her up because I just wanted to give her a hug,” Watterson said. “It was a perfect day.”
A day that got even better with the Panthers upsetting the Seahawks to move within one game of the NFC South lead.
“I definitely thought the Panthers had a chance,” Watterson said as Cheung rolled her eyes. “I think they control their own destiny, every other NFC South team sucks.”
And while the two haven’t set or planned hardly anything for their big day, on the spot, they each said they for sure knew one thing they both wanted at their wedding. For Cheung, her dog, Toki, and for Watterson, his family.
Cheung added she’s also happy for their family to come together and was happy to get blessings from both families to carry out her proposal.
“I think it’s unique for Chinese culture because they are taught the man has to court the woman. Just because I did it to Levi though, doesn’t mean he can’t do it to me, too…”