Garrett & Emmy's Horseshoe-Brick Engagement
Tailgating a year ago outside Williams-Brice Stadium, a 20-year-old Carolina student had what he called a “scary” thought—that it would be a miserably long five weeks until the next home game, when he could see a girl again, a girl he had only just met while preparing to watch the Gamecocks play, one that captivated him with her easy-going nature, love of art, and warmth.
After living and studying on a campus on which his mother, father, brothers, cousins, aunts and uncles had grown up and been educated before him, Garrett Snipes knew that he was going to marry that girl—and propose to her in a Carolina way.
View Garrett & Emmy's proposal video here.
A Carolina Love Story
“Who doesn’t hope to find their sweetheart in college and live happily ever after?” asks My Carolina student member Garrett Snipes, ’13, who proposed to his girlfriend, Emmy Persall, ’14, with a personalized Horseshoe brick a year after they first met.
Etched on their brick—a benefit available exclusively to members of My Carolina—Garrett’s sentiment to Emmy, which he presented to her on this year’s Kentucky away-game weekend, reads, “Emmy Will You Marry Me? Love Garrett – 2012.”
Garrett explains that he was walking along the Horseshoe with his mother, Carolina alumna and My Carolina member Brenda Snipes of Greenville, telling her of his plans, when the idea struck him to propose on the Horseshoe with a brick.
“The Horseshoe is such a symbol of the University of South Carolina,” Garrett says. “South Carolina has played such a role in both of our lives, and to be able to fall in love with a girl who shares that is just awesome. I know we both kind of look forward to our children going here and that brick still being here.”
Emmy concurs, “These years at South Carolina have truly been a dream come true. Carolina is an amazing place full of love and tradition.”
My Carolina Proposal
Once Garrett had made his decision to propose in this fashion, he visited My Carolina offices to see if his dream proposal could be realized. He said Jessica Allison of My Carolina, who helped Garrett from start to finish on the brick creation and installation, was extremely helpful. Jessica was thrilled for the couple, enthusiastically sending regular updates to My Carolina staff on the status of Garrett’s intention to propose on the Horseshoe.
“From the moment Garrett told me his plan to propose to Emmy, I knew that I would bend over backwards to help him out,” Jessica explains. “I made sure that our brick installer, engraver, and manufacturer were all on the same page to make this happen. Everyone pitched in and did their part to make sure that Garrett had the brick on time for his proposal. I want Garrett and Emmy to know that My Carolina wishes them nothing but the best in their future together.”
Questions about your brick? Contact Jessica Allison.
Or make your mark on the Horseshoe by ordering online!
Garrett says he knew almost immediately that his relationship with Emmy would lead to an engagement and, eventually, marriage, as they are to wed after Emmy graduates in 2014.
“I’ve always wondered, How do you know?” he asks, “and you just know, I guess. As soon as I saw Emmy, that was the first thing that popped into my head, and every day after that, it has been more and more clear.”
A Supportive Environment
The president of Delta Tau Delta and future medical student credits the unwavering love of his mother and father with his comfort in moving forward with proposing to Emmy, a graphic-design major and member of Delta Zeta.
“I’m really lucky to still have both of my parents, and they’re really, really supportive of everything, so they were there, kind of hiding out,” Garrett says. His father, Phil Snipes of Greenville, is a 1978 graduate and My Carolina member. “My mom had chalk for us to draw with afterwards. That was a really nice thing for us to do together. We went back the Friday before GameDay and redrew it, to grab a little bit of attention.”
Becoming engaged while the two are both still in school is important to Garrett.
“I really wanted to enjoy being students and being engaged before we all graduate and go in different directions. It’s nice to have all our friends here and really enjoy where this is going,” Garrett explains.
“We really do have that small-school feel,” the public-health major says of Carolina while describing how his advisor knew of the engagement before he had the chance to share it with her himself. “The whole university community has been great.”
As a four-year member of My Carolina’s student membership program, Garrett says his My Carolina experience has been very positive, citing the complimentary honey-butter croissants at California Dreaming and 10% discount at Sonic as two of his favorite benefits… not to mention his eligibility to purchase the brick.
“It’s been awesome,” he says. “I wouldn’t have been able to do the brick without this, so that’s definitely the best thing. It’s good to get the undergraduates involved in the sense of realizing that as alumni, just because you leave the school doesn’t mean you don’t get to be a part of Carolina anymore. I was lucky enough to have parents who went here, so I’ve been able to see that. It’s just a great thing that USC does.”
In addition to parents Brenda and Phil Snipes—who met and fell in love at Carolina—Garrett’s brothers Matthew and Andrew are also Carolina alumni, as is his uncle, Steven Snipes of Columbia. Garrett is proud of his Carolina lineage, which also includes four members of the Orman family from Charlotte—an aunt and uncle who also began their courtship at Carolina, and their children.