Plane Flying 'Will You Marry Me' Banner Crashes in Montreal, Killing One

A small plane towing a "will you marry me" banner crashed on an island near Montreal, killing a passenger and injuring the pilot.

The nearly 50-year-old plane — a 1974 Cessna 172 — crashed in Montreal's Parc Dieppe, near Île Saint-Hélène around 6 p.m. Saturday. A music festival was happening nearby but was unaffected, according to reports.

Chris Krepski, spokesperson for Canada's Transportation Safety Board, told the Montreal Gazette the pilot remained hospitalized Sunday night and had been unable to speak to TBS investigators.

The pilot was identified as Gian Piero Ciambella, the owner of an aerial advertisement company.

It is unclear at this time whether the person making the proposal was the sole passenger who died in the accident.

Crashed Plane Engulfed in Flames

Laurel Scala told Canada's CTV that she saw the plane flying the banner shortly before it crashed about 6pm local time on Saturday.

"It seemed like the normal height that a plane like that would fly when it has a banner," Scala told the outlet. "We struggled to read what the banner said... It said 'Will you marry me."

Plane crash
A small plane carrying a “Will you Marry Me?” banner crashed in Montreal, killing a passenger and hospitalizing the pilot. Twitter

Video recorded by The 4K Guy - Fire & Police showed flames engulfing the wreckage and a column of thick black smoke rising into the sky. Additional footage from the scene depicts firefighters dousing the burning plane, reports the Daily Mail.

What's the Cause of the Crash?

The board dispatched investigators to the scene to gather details on the cause of the crash and will be sending the remaining debris to an Ottawa lab to continue testing, reported CTV.

Multiple reports said officials received information of engine trouble on the plane, with the crash site suggesting it touched down before bouncing and spinning to a rest.

Ciambella is an award-winning pilot, according to CTV, and made an emergency landing on busy Parc Avenue in Montreal after an engine failure using the same plane that crashed on Saturday.

"Mr Ciambella is a very experienced pilot," Paul Fréchette, a pilot and former investigator with the Transportation Safety Board, told CBC.

Police said they hope to speak with Ciambella when his condition improves.

"We haven't ruled out anything," Krepski, told the Canadian Press.

The banner is believed to have fallen in the St-Lawrence River shortly before the plane went down and the marriage proposal ended in tragedy.