This is awful, awful news.
Vittorio Missoni, the CEO of the family-run Missoni design empire, has been missing since Friday when a small plane carrying him, his wife, two of their friends as well as two pilots disappeared on its way to an airport in Venezuela.
Search and rescue missions launched by local authorities have so far been unsuccessful.
Angela Missoni, Vittorio's sister and the head designer of the company, told an Italian newspaper:
"Our hope is that he is still alive … We want to hope, because for us it is important."
Vittorio's niece Margherita Missoni has been tweeting messages of hope since news of the disappearance broke, while Luca Missoni, the company's creative director, has reportedly traveled to Venezuela to assist with search efforts.
Meanwhile, the Venezuelan government has vowed not to stop searching until the missing plane and everyone on board is found, stating:
"All the authorities involved in these tasks are not reducing the intensity of the search until they locate the plane as well as its crew and passengers."
Our thoughts and prayers are with the Missoni family at this time, and we hope that everyone is found safe and sound.
[Image via Livio Valerio/AP Images.]