Bride and groom killed in horrific paragliding accident on eve of wedding

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A bride and groom died together after they plummeted to the ground in a paragliding accident the day before their wedding.

Wedding guests began to worry when the couple didn’t return after their flying trip and their bodies were tragically found in a forest in the wreckage.

Vitória Gonçalves, 21, and Marley Rego, 34, took off in their two seater glider from Caldas Novas, central west Brazil, on Tuesday afternoon.

They were heading for a farm in Pires do Rio, some 42 miles (68k) away, where they planned to celebrate their last day as singletons with friends.

The pair were heading to meet friends to have one last party as an unmarried couple

 

But the pair, who were experienced paragliders, never arrived at their destination.

Their bodies were found on Wednesday morning in a forest on the banks of the GO-309 motorway linking the two cities.

The flight should have taken around three quarters of an hour, but half an hour after take-off their friends, who were in touch with them on social media, lost contact.

The wreckage of the glider can be seen amongst trees

 

A video showing the pair airborne and enjoying the journey is believed to have been recorded moments before the fall.

Concerned friends launched a search for the missing couple later that night and the hunt continued the next morning.

Andrei Costa, also a paraglider, said: “Marley was experienced and had already done many flights with his fiancée.

“During the flight, before the accident, Vitória was recording videos and sharing them in a group we had on Whatsapp.”

Andrei was instrumental in directing rescuers to the crash site. Early Wednesday morning he flew over the route taken by the missing pair and spotted the wreckage strewn over a remote area in the forest.

Speaking at the crash site, fire officer Major Adriano dos Santo said to Brazilian online media O Popular: “A friend alerted us when the couple failed to arrive at their destination. So this morning we searched the area located by him and found the paraglider.”

Vitória Gonçalves, 21, and Marley Rego, 34 were due to get married the following day

 

The couple’s bodies were discovered in the wreckage on the morning they should have been exchanging their vows at a registry office followed by the wedding breakfast.

The registrar said he had tried calling them several times when they didn’t turn up at the expected time and guests waited for their arrival.

The pair had been together for four years and were buried in the same grave on Thursday.

Marley ran a car wash which was named after Bob Marley. He leaves a four year old daughter who lives with her mother.

The pair were buried in the same grave the next day

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Preliminary findings by investigators suggests that one of the two safety locking clips which are attached to the wings may have come loose and could have caused the lightweight craft to plummet to the ground.

The accident is being investigated by the Centre for Investigation and Prevention of Aeronautical Accidents (Cenipa). Agents will reveal, within the next few days, whether the equipment was defective or if there was fault by the pilot.

According to the Brazilian Paramotor Association, those interested in flying the model handled by the couple need to take a 40-hour training course at an authorised school before receiving their license. Pilots also need to take an airspace test with the National Civil Aviation Agency (Anac).



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