PHOTOS: Today, New Zealand officially became the 13th country to welcome same-sex marriage, and the first couple married 30,000 feet in the air onboard a special Air New Zealand flight from Queenstown to Auckland in front of family, friends and Modern Family actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson, who attended with husband Justin Mikita.
“It’s been an absolute pleasure to be able to celebrate this historic and joyous moment with Lynley [Bendall] and Ally [Wanikau],” said Ferguson. “Marriage equality is something very dear to both Justin and me.”
Following the ceremony a surprise choir performed the traditional Maori love song “Pokarekare Ana”, which was memorably sung in the New Zealand Parliament when the bill was passed in April.
The newlyweds said they’ve waited a long time to make their 13-year union official, and Bendall added: “To be married at 30,000 feet beneath strings of fairy lights with our children, friends and family as witnesses makes an already memorable day that much more special. It was surreal to have Jesse play a part in the ceremony too – we’re big fans of Modern Family!”
Put on by Air New Zealand, Chief People Officer Lorraine Murphy said the in-flight ceremony was an unforgettable way to mark the new law and “a great celebration of New Zealand’s diversity.”