Liliya Perelman and Jerry Kramer

Jewish summer camp romance blossoms into marriage

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Jewish summer camp romance blossoms into marriage

Liliya Perelman and Jerry Kramer
Rabbi Michael Ragozin at the wedding of Jerry Kramer and Liliya Perelman in September / Thomson and Thomson Photography

OCTOBER 18, 2018 – For those who spend a summer at a Jewish camp, the memories can last a lifetime.

For some, there are bonds formed that stand the test of time.

Such was the case for Liliya Perelman of Marblehead and Jerry Kramer of Peabody, who met at camp 10 years ago and were married on Sept. 2.

Born in Moscow, Perelman came to the United States with her parents when she was 3 years old. Educated at Cohen Hillel Academy (now the Epstein Hillel School), she went on to the Prozdor program at Hebrew College and Marblehead High School. After graduating, Perelman attended George Washington University and spent a semester in Tel Aviv. She next moved on to Cardozo Law School at Yeshiva University and now serves as the assistant corporation counsel in the Labor and Employment division at the New York City Law Department.

Perelman’s favorite pastime is swimming. In addition to being on the team at Marblehead High, she became a swim instructor at the JCC in Marblehead and worked as a lifeguard during the summers at Camp Tevya in Brookline, N.H., and Camp Simchah when it was in Middleton.

In 2008, Perelman was a lifeguard at Camp Simchah when she met “Camper Jerry,” who was a counselor.

“He was actually my sister Sofia’s counselor the next summer,” Perelman recalled.

“After Jerry saw Liliya,” said her mother, Jane Mikityansky, “he never left the pool!”

Kramer’s parents come from Sudbury and Holliston, but he has lived in Peabody since he was born. Perelman’s study abroad in Israel made the relationship long-distance for a while, but the two kept in close touch and reconnected quickly when she returned.

Liliya Perelman and Jerry Kramer

When Perelman was in law school, Kramer visited often. After he graduated from UMass-Amherst with a degree in computer science, the two found an apartment in New York in 2016 where Kramer works as a programmer.

During the rest of 2016, the two families spent time together at Passover and Rosh Hashanah. In June of 2017, while on a trip to Newport, R.I, Kramer proposed after a wine tasting at a local vineyard.

“It was the first day of camp orientation,” Perelman recalled, explaining the significance of the date of the proposal. “The first day we had met.”

The wedding was held at the Boston Harbor Hotel and officiated by Rabbi Michael Ragozin of Congregation Shirat Hayam in Swampscott.

When asked about the highlights of the ceremony, Perelman recalled using her husband’s late grandfather’s tallis and a gold wedding band that had been worn by his mother.

“My favorite part of the wedding,” Kramer said, “was having all of our family and friends together in one place to celebrate with us.” He also noted that his wife promised to watch his beloved Celtics with him this season.

The couple lists such shared favorite activities as traveling (they celebrated Liliya’s passing the Massachusetts and New York Bars with a trip to Thailand), cooking, and exploring.

“We honeymooned in South Africa after the wedding,” Perelman said. “Our favorite part was the safari, and we definitely plan on celebrating an anniversary by doing another safari in the future.”

“I proposed on a vineyard in Newport, R.I.,” said Kramer, “and it seemed only fitting to end our honeymoon at a vineyard in Cape Town, South Africa. It was the perfect end to our safari trip and a reminder that we will have many more adventures together in the future.”

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