“I’m incredibly lucky to be getting married to my best friend and partner-in-crime,” Strong, 33, says in a statement to PEOPLE of his upcoming wedding to Alexandra Barreto in Oregon on Sunday.
Strong – who played bad boy Shawn Hunter on the ABC sitcom – and Barreto met as costars on the short-lived WB series Pepper Dennis in 2006 and continued working together on the horror film Tooth and Nail later that year.
Strong proposed to Barreto just before Christmas last year, in the pouring rain beneath the redwood trees of his childhood home in Northern California, with a ring he made himself.
“I spent weeks making the ring in secret,” says Strong. “I carved the ring out of wax, cast it in white gold and had my dad make a wooden ring box for me. My dad made my mom’s ring, so I was following in his footsteps.”