Coronavirus

Dubliner's 'Zoom' proposal across 6,000 km to naval officer girlfriend

`She said yes'. Picture from Bobby Murphy via RTÉ

A lovesick Dubliner separated by more than 6,000km from his naval officer girlfriend used a group video app to ask her to marry him - all the way from Abu Dhabi.

Bobby Murphy used Zoom - which has gained mass popularity during the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions - to propose to Nessa Maloney as her family watched on remotely.

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Lieutenant Commander Maloney, who serves in the Irish Naval Service at Haulbowline, Co Cork, had thought she and her loved ones were taking part in a virtual table quiz when her beau slipped in an extra question just for her before the final round.

Mr Murphy, who has worked for a consulting and enterprise IT company in the United Arab Emirates since October 2018, told RTÉ he has been planning to ask for her hand in marriage at Easter, but his plans were shut down by the lockdown.

"I wanted to marry Nessa, but I wanted to ask her parents' blessing first. Face-to-face, in Ireland. Preferably last Easter weekend. But the world shut down and we all had to stay home and stay safe."

`Nessa would you marry me?' flashed up on screen

He placed a Zoom call to her parents, asking for their blessing, before arranging for a twist in their weekly catch-up.

"A few days later, it was the weekly family table quiz, which we use Zoom for. Nessa and I were going to be the quizmasters. So I did a picture quiz and figured I would just slot in another question."

`Nessa would you marry me?' flashed up on screen and from naval headquarters LCdr Maloney replied: "Yes Bobby, I will."

"I'm very, very happy," she told RTÉ.

"It was lovely to have all the family there and you could see everybody was really excited, as are extended family and friends as the news has spread."

Mr Murphy said the couple don't know when they will be able to celebrate their engagement and have yet to set a date, but "talk or video call every day".

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