Gay couple marries while plane is in Canadian airspace.

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    Nov 19, 2010 1:26 AM GMT
    Gay couple reportedly ties the knot on commercial flight

    Flight attendant says captain officiated ceremony over Canadian airspace

    . By Elizabeth Chuck

    msnbc.com msnbc.com


    Passengers on a red-eye woke up to an announcement more interesting than the typical "fasten your seatbelts" as they approached New York early Thursday: Two men had gotten married on board overnight when the captain briefly flew over Canada, where gay marriage is legal.

    "The head flight attendant made the announcement on the P.A. 'While you were sleeping, we had a little wedding in the galley. The captain diverted us over Canadian airspace so he could marry two gentlemen,'" said passenger Ryan McManus, who was returning home to New York.

    The captain of Virgin America Flight 28, which originated in San Francisco, officiated the wedding, McManus quoted the flight attendant as saying. "We'd like to wish them the best and offer them a round of applause," he quoted the attendant as saying, noting that the passengers applauded on cue.

    ..Virgin America confirmed to msnbc.com that one of the normal flight paths for Flight 28 does go over Canada.

    "We don't yet have any confirmation or more details" about Thursday morning's flight, Virgin America spokeswoman Abby Lunardini said. "Believe it or not, we've actually had a wedding onboard before."

    That wedding was in October 2007, on a flight from San Francisco to Las Vegas, and was performed by Virgin Group Chairman Sir Richard Branson.

    "The flight attendants on Virgin are very playful and really good at conversation, so we weren't sure if they were having fun with us. But we could tell at the end he was being genuine," McManus said of Thursday morning's loudspeaker announcement.

    ."I was traveling with two other co-workers and we had to sort out what happened. We were like, is that a service they offer?"

    Matt Mullenweg, the founding developer of blogging software WordPress, was also on the flight. He was sleeping during the ceremony, but told msnbc.com that he asked the flight attendant if the announcement was accurate as he was leaving the plane.

    "I didn't understand what he had said or that it was even possible," he said.

    ..San Francisco resident Laura Piper was asleep for most of the five-hour flight, too. "Actually had no clue it happened until we landed in NYC," she tweeted after landing at John F. Kennedy Airport.

    In July 2005, Canada became the fourth country in the world to legalize same-sex marriages. New York City currently offers same-sex commitment ceremonies, which fall short of offering full marriage rights. In California, activists are appealing Proposition 8, the state's gay marriage ban, which defines marriage as being only between a man and a woman.

    Matthew McGill, a D.C-based attorney who is representing the plaintiffs in a Prop. 8 case, said he had never heard of an in-air marriage. "I'm skeptical of the whole story," he told msnbc.com.

    © 2010 msnbc.com Reprints

  • BIG_N_TALL

    Posts: 2190

    Nov 19, 2010 2:02 AM GMT
    Cool icon_exclaim.gif if only my flights could have been that interesting icon_neutral.gif
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    Nov 19, 2010 2:07 AM GMT
    Now that was the "awwww" moment of the day.

    And what an awesome way of branding for Virgin!
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    Nov 19, 2010 2:09 AM GMT
    I love being Canadian.
    icon_biggrin.gif
  • BIG_N_TALL

    Posts: 2190

    Nov 19, 2010 2:17 AM GMT
    Tazo995 saidNow that was the "awwww" moment of the day.

    And what an awesome way of branding for Virgin!


    I was thinking the same thing. This has the potential to be a huge marketing event for Virgin
  • Vaughn

    Posts: 1880

    Nov 19, 2010 2:34 AM GMT
    uhhuh saidI love being Canadian.
    icon_biggrin.gif


    Lucky.
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    Nov 19, 2010 2:50 AM GMT
    Tazo995 saidNow that was the "awwww" moment of the day.

    And what an awesome way of branding for Virgin!


    I know, Awwwww
  • shirty

    Posts: 290

    Nov 19, 2010 2:54 AM GMT
    best story ever icon_smile.gif
  • offshore

    Posts: 1294

    Nov 19, 2010 3:02 AM GMT
    What an awesome story if true!

    However I have heard a ship or plane's captain does not have, within their pwoer to seal a marraige (in the tradtional sense), but to hell with tradition!

    Round of cheers!
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    Nov 19, 2010 3:03 AM GMT
    beautiful! But umm on a red eye? ouch.
  • barriehomeboy

    Posts: 2475

    Nov 19, 2010 8:54 AM GMT
    It's just normal everyday life, up here in Canada, for two guys to get married. You can fly up to Banff, ski with Demi and Ashton, or any of the thousands of other celebrities who come here because we just leave them alone, because we're so polite, when they're on the streets, then get married and go back home to the den of hate and intolerance that you poor gay bastards have to deal with down there. It's that easy!
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    Nov 19, 2010 7:52 PM GMT
    That adds to the ambiguous meaning of the "Mile High Club."
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    Nov 19, 2010 8:01 PM GMT
    "Diverts" is misleading. This is one of several flight routings that is available. That said, I do envy how much more tolerant Canadian society is. Could you please invade someplace warm? Then I'll go live there.
  • BlackBeltGuy

    Posts: 2609

    Nov 19, 2010 8:07 PM GMT
    uhhuh saidI love being Canadian.
    icon_biggrin.gif


    hottest. guys. ever.
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    Nov 19, 2010 8:20 PM GMT
    Even though it was performed in the air by an airline captain, is the marriage still legal?
  • rioriz

    Posts: 1056

    Nov 19, 2010 8:25 PM GMT
    Blackbeltguy said
    uhhuh saidI love being Canadian.
    icon_biggrin.gif


    hottest. guys. ever.


    I.TOTALLY.AGREE!
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    Nov 19, 2010 8:49 PM GMT
    cmhoh1985 saidEven though it was performed in the air by an airline captain, is the marriage still legal?


    I don't know what the law is in Canada, but a captain of a ship at sea is generally able to perform civil marriages much in the manner that a justice of the peace can. Many big cruise ships now have chapels expressly for this purpose. I would assume that the couple still needs to get a license with the government in the place where they are claiming to be married.