Sam Champion Thanks Fans for 'Amazing Response' to His Engagement

Sam Champion Engaged, Thanks Viewers for Messages
Rubem Robierb (left) and Sam Champion
Courtesy ABC

10/08/2012 AT 12:00 PM EDT

Good Morning America weather anchor Sam Champion basked in the news about his wedding engagement on Monday's program, and thanked viewers and ABC News colleagues for their congratulations.

"The amazing response from folks all over the country was just incredible for us," said Champion, whose engagement to his boyfriend, fine-arts photographer Rubem Robierb, was announced on Friday.

"I thank you," Champion, 51, said on the air. (To The New York Times he said, "We're getting married New Year's Eve in Miami," after they legally wed in New York State.)

Describing the overwhelming reaction he's received both in person and through social media, Champion said, "I felt like we lived in a small town. … I was born in Paducah, Kentucky, and to me that's exactly what it felt like. We walked out on the street and everyone was like, 'Hey, congratulations.' "





He added, "Thank you for the Tweets, and the Facebook and just coming up on the street and saying the most wonderful things."

Ben Affleck, on Monday's GMA to promote his new movie Argo, also got into the spirit.

"I want to congratulate Sam," said the actor-filmmaker, 40. "It's to our shame that you can't get married in every state in the union, but one day I hope you will be able to. It's very exciting. I was very inspired … a moving love story."

There was more. (To see a video, click here.) The show's news anchor, Josh Elliott, said teasingly, "He's a groomzilla already," and suggested he and show anchor George Stephanopoulos serve as best men.

Also chiming in: the recuperating Robin Roberts, who Tweeted her congratulations while she is recovering from a successful bone-marrow transplant. "You know how thrilled I am for you, @SamChampion and Rubem!" she said. "Hope to be well enough to attend the wedding. Much love to you both."
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