Eoin McDermott popped the question in the arrivals hall just moments after returning home from work in Saudi Arabia, asking his girlfriend of six years, Emer O’Shea, to marry him.
“He texted me to say the plane had landed, and then, when he came through the arrivals gate we had a hug and a kiss, and then he got down on one knee and said he had something to ask me,” Emer said.
“I was totally shocked, and started crying. I wasn’t expecting it. But it was lovely. Cork Airport has been a base for our relationship for the last few years, with me dropping him off and collecting him from work.”
Eoin has been working overseas in recent years — in Canada and more recently in Saudi Arabia.
The couple plans to go shopping for the ring in the coming days.
Meanwhile, in Dublin Airport, grandchildren were being reunited with grandparents and grown children returned home to the family nest having travelled thousands of miles.
“I’m just in from Costa Rica. I work over there. I’ve only been there for three months but it feels like a lifetime it’s just good to get home it’s a different world out there,” said Hazel Wilkinson from Sligo, who was collected by her parents and brother.
Also travelling in from a long-haul journey was Mariesa Kennedy, home for her nephew’s christening.
“I’m home from the Dominican Republic. I was out there working with a baseball team since October. He [nephew, Oliver Bonas] was eight days old when I left, broke my heart,” she said.
“My sister’s getting married so we’ll be looking for bridesmaid dresses while I’m home. I’m home until New Year’s Eve so he is getting christened during the week.”
Another family reunion taking place in Dublin airport yesterday morning was that of Adele O’Kelly and her sister Helena Russ.
“My sister Helena and her husband Sean with their two kids, Finn and Sophia are home,” Adele told the Irish Examiner. “They’re coming from Florida, they live over there so we haven’t seen them in two years. Finn is only 2, so he was only a few weeks old when they came over last and Sophia is 4 so she was 2 the last time she was here.”
Also welcoming family home was 13-year-old Hughie Brophy, who was there to greet his uncle Eric home from Eric.
“I love him,” said Hughie while waiting for his uncle to walk through the sliding doors.
“I was thinking he was going to be here somehow,” said Eric after a joyful reunion. “I knew I was getting collected all right. I’ve been there for 33 years. It’s always good to come home.”