Carrie Ann Inaba has got engaged on live television. The "Dancing with the Stars" judge was subbing for Kelly Ripa on "Live with Regis and Kelly" Thursday morning, March 31, when her boyfriend Jesse Sloan came with a blissful surprise as he proposed to her in the middle of her co-hosting gig.
When the live show started, Carrie Ann clarified earlier rumors suggesting she was engaged. Holding up her ringless finger, she told co-host Regis Philbin, "He's just a really good guy. He takes good care of me and he's really warm. He loves my cats - we have five cats together - not a lot of men accept a girl who has so many cats."
Jake Gyllenhaal then popped in, bringing with him her engagement ring, which was later clarified to be just a prop. The Hollywood actor told her he found it in her dressing room with a note that read, "Do not touch, engagement ring." When Carrie Ann responded only with giggles to his inquiry whether it belongs to her, he said, "Come on, it's time to start telling the truth!"
The actual proposal didn't take place until the final "inbox" segment of the show when Regis answered an audience member's question about how to propose to his girlfriend. Jesse then came out wearing a tux, leading Carrie Ann to say, "Uh-oh, what's happening." Getting down on one knees, Jesse told her, "I've struggled to find the words to express what you mean to me."
The accountant continued, "You're an inspiration, you're beautiful, you're wonderful, you're everything to me. Will you marry me?" When the ring box was opened, Regis said as referring to the sparkler, "Whoa, look at that, Carrie Ann." And, Carrie Ann responded to her boyfriend's question, "Yes. I will marry you...You tricked me!"
As for Carrie Ann's engagement ring, Jesse presented the dancer/host with a two-and-a-half carat, D-color, princess-cut diamond. Ann Mangini of Santa Monica's Rafinity jewelers told People magazine, "Jesse came in a few months ago. He had a very clear idea of ring style and diamond cut: princess cut in a clean platinum mounting."
About the ring itself, Ann added, "Since the ring was so very simple, for a little flair I suggested we set both his and Carrie Ann's birthstones hidden on the inside of the ring. [It's] a Rafinity signature detail and a way to symbolically join the happy couple."