Cpl. Kelsey De Santis created a national stir last fall when she took to the Internet to ask celebrity Justin Timberlake to her Marine Corps birthday ball in a YouTube video. He said yes, and a friendship was born.
Seven months later, Timberlake returned the favor, asking De Santis to attend the 2012 Spike TV Guy’s Choice Awards event with him last weekend in Los Angeles.
In a phone interview, De Santis said it was surreal rubbing elbows with Adam Sandler, Channing Tatum, Aaron Rogers and other celebrities. She and her boyfriend sat with Timberlake at a table right near the stage.
It’s likely De Santis, who left active duty late last year, will appear on TV tomorrow night when Spike TV airs its coverage of the event. Timberlake won the Entertainer of the Year award, then asked De Santis to stand during his acceptance speech and recognized her.
“Thank you for inviting me — even for one night — to something so meaningful,” he said of the birthday ball, according to media reports. “While you were enlisting, I was put in a boy band.”
De Santis said she was surprised he thanked her, and found the experience surreal.
“I just remember seeing myself on screen,” she said, “and saying ‘Oh my God.'”
The invitation came just a few days before the event through Timberlake’s manager, De Santis said. She confessed to breaking out in giggles after seeing hearing Sandler exercise his trademark laugh nearby.
TV coverage airs Saturday at 9 p.m. on Spike TV.