Back in October 2013, Maryanne Lewell and Michael Townes both competed in the Jeopardy! Teachers Tournament. Little did they realize, it was the beginning of the rest of their lives together.
Both teachers, Michael teaches English in South Carolina, and Maryanne teaches history in New Brunswick, Canada. Both scored well in the annual online questionnaire to appear on the show, and both were selected to compete.
Although the two didn’t compete in the same game, Michael was already head over heels for Maryanne. Another contestant on the program recalled his conversation with Michael about Maryanne, saying “Our conversation started with Mike saying, ‘That girl from Canada is so smart,’ and continued with him saying, ‘That girl from Canada is so beautiful’ and ‘That girl from Canada is so witty.’ It ended with Mike saying, ‘That girl from Canada is so out of my league.'”
Michael wound up leaving the show after the second day of taping, but it wasn’t long until he got in contact with Maryanne again. The two reconnected over social media, and Michael wound up going for it all. He texted her “At the risk of what seems like a fairly strong friendship here, I really just have to say, I hope it’s not too weird, but if we lived in the same city, there’s really no way I wouldn’t have asked you out by now.”
And the rest is history. The two of them then pursued a long-distance relationship, and they finally tied the knot just this past month. Maryanne plans to move to South Carolina to be with Michael, but she has to work out some immigration paperwork first.
But the best part about all of this? Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek himself gave a shoutout to the couple. He said “My congratulations to the couple. Although Maryanne and Michael are not the first couple to have met at Jeopardy and gone on to be married, they participated in one of our best Teachers Tournaments. Even though neither won the competition, they certainly are ‘Winners in Love.'”
Classy move, Alex. You can read their entire story over on the New York Times vows section right here.
I leave you with my thoughts on this entire situation: