Wedding party in hot air balloon crashes into San Diego backyard

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A hot air balloon crashed into a San Diego backyard Monday just moments after a couple aboard were married — and it was all caught on camera.

Thirteen people were aboard the balloon when it went down in Rancho Penasquitos about 4:45 p.m., San Diego Fire-Rescue Department spokesman Maurice Luque told ABC 10 News. One person was taken to an area hospital with a minor back injury, Luque said, but no one else was hurt.

It was not immediately clear what caused the crash, which a friend of the bride and groom recorded on her cellphone.

The video shows five people huddled against one side of the basket, their backs to the ground that is rapidly getting closer. ‘Brace,’ the group says in unison moments before the basket hits the earth, prompting shrieks as the yellow-and-blue balloon skidded forward.


The newlyweds, Kerin and Jonathan Narcisse, told the TV station what happened at their reception later in the day. The balloon operator tried to bring the balloon down a ‘couple times,’ the two said.

‘We kept missing landing spots,’ Jonathan Narcisse said. ‘Next thing you know, we’re descending and I’m thinking, ‘How is he going to land here?’ because there’s no place to land .... He hit the fence, but we hit and we skidded and then we bounced.’

‘I got a little worried when we hit the fence,’ Kerin Narcisse said. ‘I thought, ‘Well, if the fence doesn’t stop us then we’re going down this hill.’ ‘

The irony of the day was not lost on the couple, however. Kerin Narcisse said she told her husband-to-be before the wedding that if she ever got married again, it would have to be on a hot air balloon.

And apparently her husband is afraid of heights.

‘I am terrified,’ he said.


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— Kate Mather

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