Saturday 24 June 2017

Love is in the air . . .

Olivia Ryan

A ROMANTIC mid-air proposal with a difference saw a Dundalk couple celebrate their sky high engagement last weekend!

A ROMANTIC mid-air proposal with a difference saw a Dundalk couple celebrate their sky high engagement last weekend!

Gavin Quigley, who is originally from Kilkerley, lives in Cork with his childhood sweetheart Christina Mulligan, Aisling Park, and their son Calvin (3).

He works as an aircraft mechanic, and told The Argus how this gave him the idea for a highly unusual way to ask Christina for her hand in marriage.

'Christina and myself had been talking about getting married, but I really wanted to surprise her,' said Gavin who first met his fiancee when they were just 16.

And so on Saturday last, he decided to pop the question on a giant sky banner which was flown past their aircraft as the couple and their young son cruised at 1,000ft off the Cork coast.

Gavin produced an engagement ring in the aircraft cabin, and a tearful Christina uttered 'yes'.

He admitted that organising the proposal took some very careful planning.

'I had told Christina that we were going to an air show in the midlands, and that we'd take Calvin along. She doesn't have a great sense of direction, so she didn't realise that we were actually flying towards Bantry!'

I had to lie about where we were going – otherwise it wouldn't have worked,' Gavin said.

He had arranged with 'Atlantic' Flight instructor Gerry Humphreys, to take off in his Bellanca Super Decathlon aircraft earlier, and head for Bantry airfield to pick up the giant sky banner.

As Gavin and Christina's plane closed in on Bantry, their pilot radioed Gerry who positioned his aircraft alongside them at just the right time.

Gavin then told Christina to look out the window of the plane where she saw the banner which read: 'Christina – will U marry me?' trailing behind.

'I think it took her a few seconds to realise what was happening, but when I turned around and produced the ring from my pocket, it really hit her. She started crying.'

'I have to admit that I was relieved when she said yes!'

Champagne corks popped when the aircraft landed and Gavin's mother, Marie and his brother Kieran, who had travelled down from Dundalk, arrived to congratulate the couple.

'We are delighted, but haven't got around to setting a date yet.

'Hopefully we'll get back home to Dundalk this weekend to meet all the family.'

The Argus

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