HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – On this Valentine’s Day, love is in the air all over the Tennessee Valley and here at WHNT NEWS 19 too.
This week, we’ve been telling you on social media that our Noon Anchor and Investigative Reporter Carrie Marchese is getting married.
Carrie is engaged and inquiring minds have been wanting to know — to whom?
He’s tall, dark and handsome and you see him nearly every day delivering your weather forecast.
What you don’t know about him — and frankly, we didn’t know either, immediately — is Cupid struck him and Carrie about a year a half ago.
And now Carrie is getting married to — WHNT NEWS 19’s Weekend Meteorologist Brandon Chambers! Here’s their love story.
He’s from Oklahoma and passionate about weather, good and bad.
She’s from Arizona and passionate about people, good and bad.
But in their off time, Carrie Marchese and Brandon Chambers — both of whom didn’t know anyone in Alabama before joining WHNT NEWS 19 — became friends.
“Yeah, poor Brandon didn’t really have a chance,” Carrie laughed as she sat with Brandon on a park bench in Big Spring Park.
“We went out to dinner, but I just assumed she was just welcoming the new guy,” Brandon recalled. “Little did I know she had an ulterior motive.” “I had other plans,” Carried added.
Over the next year and a half, including anchoring newscasts together on the air and taking many quiet walks in the park off the air, the two realized they’d found something special. They kept it secret, even among their co-workers, until they were certain about what they had.
“I think we were pretty savvy about, you know, not being too open about it too quickly,” said Brandon. “Just so we could develop the relationship without a microscope.”
“It is definitely nice to be engaged on Valentine’s Day 2013,” said Carrie.
When Brandon met Carrie, there was someone else in her life: Zorro. He is a shih tzu who had been Carrie’s companion for nine years and wasn’t exactly enthusiastic about another male coming into the picture.
Brandon, who insisted he likes dogs, confessed he preferred big dogs.
“Brandon had to work for Zorro’s love for a little while,” said Carrie, holding Zorro. “[Zorro's] kind of an old man and set in his ways.”
The love-hate relationship between the Brandon and Zorro culminated one day when Brandon left a bag on the floor at Carrie’s house.
“He hiked his leg and marked his territory,” said Brandon. “He saturated that bag,” added Carrie. “Like, all of the water bowls were completely drained of water that day. It was if Zorro went back to the water bowl and back to the bag, back to the water bowl and back to the bag.”
But after that, the clouds moved out and Zorro gave Brandon his blessing.
Now, the couple–who enjoys romantic dinners and low-key activities—is planning the trip of a lifetime to the Mediterranean, where they’ll marry in a private ceremony, just the two of them present.
“There’s a lot of unknowns in the world,” said Carrie. “But one thing that I feel really good about is this relationship.”
They’ll return with a simple goal.
“Have a healthy, happy family where we can spend a lot of time together and enjoy a relatively simple life,” said Brandon.
The two agreed on other big thing: that moving to Alabama was the best thing that has ever happened to them. They’ll embark on their trip to the Amalfi Coast in Italy for their wedding in early June.
Feel free to send the happy couple message of congratulations and best wishes on the WHNT NEWS 19 Facebook page!
And don’t look for a name change for Carrie, on air. She’s decided to retain her maiden name on air in honor of her father.