What do you get when you cross a rock star with a White House party crasher? A tear-jerking, 11.42 carat proposal, obviously!
Journey guitarist Neal Schon met Michaele Salahi (nee Holt) 16 years ago during his band’s concert in D.C. Enamored of her, he had a crew member bring her and her friend backstage.
It’s exactly what every woman dreams of when she goes to see her favorite band in concert. After hours of talking, the then-single woman went home with a rock star’s phone number and affection.
Somehow, she waited nine months before calling, because how serious can a rock star be about taking you out on a date? Shockingly, it didn’t work out.
Michaele went on to marry Tareq Salahi and – years later – famously crash a White House Party.
(Remember them, now?)
But following a stint on Real Housewives of DC and a tumultuous year of media coverage, the 47-year-old filed for divorce from her husband… and fled to the side of the Journey guitarist.
She has spent the past year on tour with Neal, which was enough to convince him that she was able to handle being the wife of a musician. As for the crazy rock and roll lifestyle, Michaele said, “I love the man, so I embrace the life.”
So how did this romantic proposal come about?
During a charity concert in Baltimore, with both their families in the audience, Schon called her up on stage. “I had this whole thing I was going to do,” Schon says, but admits that as soon as he got to his knee, “I started crying.”
“It was the biggest ‘yes’ ever!” says the bride-to-be who joined her love in tears on stage. The audience went nuts as the band broke out into the song “Faithfully.”
The rock star put a ring on it to the tune of an 11.42 carat oval cut diamond. Sounds a little over the top, but Schon says, “It’s big, but it doesn’t look gaudy.”
Here’s a photo of the proposal: