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(SAN DIEGO) — A Navy corpsman, who returned home to California a day early for Christmas, gave his girlfriend the surprise of her life.

Corpsman Robert Everhart, 30, arranged to surprise his girlfriend Michelle Gungon on Monday by showing up at San Diego’s Sharp Memorial Hospital, where she works as a nurse.

The hospital holds special meaning for the pair because it’s where the two were introduced, by Everhart’s mother, who also works there.

Gungon’s colleagues at the hospital, who had been in on the surprise for weeks,  told her she needed to stand with them for a commercial shoot for the hospital.

What they did not know, was that Everhart was not there just to surprise Gugnon by coming in a day early from Texas, where he is stationed, but to ask her to spend the rest of her life with him.

“I’m going to propose to my girlfriend of two-and-a-half years,” Everhart told local ABC affiliate KGTV, there to film the surprise.

“I’m supposed to be here tomorrow,” he said.  “She thinks she’s picking me up from the airport.”

After shocking Gungon with his early arrival, Everhart got down on one knee and proposed, as Gungon’s fellow nurses, also shocked, broke out into cheers around them.

Gungon said yes and, it turns out, the surprise was perfect timing.

“Actually, a year ago, I already knew that I wanted to marry him,” she told KGTV.  “But, of course, you [have to] wait for the perfect timing.”

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