“I love you, [Lauren Zima]. The next chapter stars now!” the ABC alum, 50, gushed via Instagram after popping the question in Napa Valley wine country.
As for Lauren, 33, the Entertainment Tonight host shared her own sweet message with fans. “We tell each other this all the time, and we said it again in an unforgettably beautiful moment this weekend: ‘I didn’t know love could be like this.’ You are the most incredible partner,” the Chicago native wrote. “Thank you for loving me, championing me and asking me to marry you. Here’s to the next amazing chapter and all the rest.”
Lauren was previously married to ex-husband Charles McKeague for four years. Although she didn’t file for divorce until January 2019, just four days before going public Chris, the couple had been separated since March 2018, according to court documents obtained by Life & Style.
Chris and ex-wife Gwen Harrison split in 2012 after 18 years of marriage. They were high school sweethearts and share two teenage children, son Joshua and daughter Taylor.
That being said, the newly engaged couple’s relationship has been relatively smooth sailing. Chris gushed over their “easy” romance during an interview with People in 2019.
“We started dating and, like any relationship, she made me happy,” he explained about his sweet romance with the reporter. “She was kind, nice, we got along, she blended in great with my friends. and just all those steps in the relationship where you start checking those boxes off and it gets better and better and better.”
“I’m so grateful to Bachelor Nation for all of the memories we’ve made together,” the Texas native wrote via Instagram at the time. “While my two-decade journey is wrapping up, the friendships I’ve made will last a lifetime.”
An insider told Life & Style at the time that Chris had “the upper hand to an extent” while negotiating his multi-million dollar payout.
“The bottom line is that the network didn’t want any problems,” the insider said. “But there were also tons of fine print and stipulations in his contract regarding employee conduct and policy that played out in the network’s favor.”
Chris now resides in Austin, Texas, and luckily, he likes keeping his personal life low-key. “When I get away from the show, I like to be pretty quiet and shut it down as much as I possibly can,” he told Life & Style in 2020.
Congrats to Chris and Lauren!