Canadian Bride Drowns During Photo Shoot, Wedding Dress to Blame?

What started out as an ideal day for a young bride quickly turned to tragedy as the she drowned while posing for wedding photos. It's believed that the weight of her wedding dress contributed to the drowning, keeping her captive in the water due to its weight.

Maria Pantazopoulos, 30, was swept away in the current near Dorwin Falls in Quebec, Canada. Her wedding dress absorbed a great deal of water- enough that she was pulled into the river and was swept away.

"She had her wedding dress on and she said, 'Take some pictures of me while I swim a little bit in the lake,'" explained photographer Louis Pagakis. "She went in and her dress got heavy. I tried everything I could to save her. I jumped in, I was screaming and yelling, we tried our best."

Unfortunately, Pantazopoulos could not be reached, and she was carried away by the current. Her body was recovered nearly four hours later. Two witnesses to the ordeal were treated for shock.

Pantazopoulos reportedly wanted a "trash the dress" photo, which is a new trend in which brides destroy their prized dresses. The trend kicked off in 2005 after a photo shoot with John Michael Cooper, a Las Vegas wedding photographer. He took pictures of a bride who was feeling "anti-wedding" after the ordeal.

"In fashion photography, they often put really pretty people in very ugly places," Cooper told The New York Times at the time. "I'm applying that technique to weddings."

The trend quickly caught on as more and more brides wanted to "trash" something that had cost them a fortune and was no longer significant. Christa Becker, one of the first women photographed trashing her dress, told The Times she would rather have the unique photograph than "a dress in a box that is perfectly preserved."