While some knew him as Jonah and others as Mac, we all loved and respected him. And we miss him dearly.

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Jonah @ Kutz: Ben Fuld

2015.06.SummerCamp“Summer Camp” is The Jonah Maccabee Foundation’s summer fundraiser for 2015. Throughout June and July 2015, we’ll be remembering — through the writing of his friends as well as some who watched from the sidelines — experiences, both great and small, that were part of Jonah’s seventeen years (from age 1 to 18) at the URJ Kutz Camp in Warwick, NY. We’re hoping you’ll be inspired to help us help Kutz continue its wildly successful work of helping teens blaze a summer’s path to a whole, healthy life. Please consider making your tax-deductible gift at jonahmac.org. Thank you. You’re the best!


Ben Fuld remembers …

BenFuld.01aBen is currently working for his family’s business just north of Baltimore while living downtown. He will be starting Law School at University of Maryland in Baltimore this August. His dog, Brooks, turns two in August and he’s the best dog of all time. Ben went to Kutz as a participant in 2006 and was a staff member from 2007-2011.

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It was tough for me to come up with a single memory that really did justice to the type of person Jonah was. To help me narrow down the options, I called my brother, Mike, to help. As we spoke, our conversation turned into a story-sharing session between us that reminded me how impactful Jonah was to the Kutz community. There wasn’t one single story that could sum up his character. So here are just a few of our memories of Jonah that made us smile:

During his summer on staff, Jonah would spend the final moments before Shabbat making sure his fellow staff members were ready for the joy of Shabbat by walking around camp kissing every single staff person on the cheek, and personally wishing them a Shabbat Shalom. He would carry his guitar around all the time and start impromptu singalongs with all the (mostly Dispatch) hits.

Mike shared a story about how he hadn’t yet told Jonah that he’d gotten his job at Kutz, so Jonah vacuumed the Beit Am by himself to show how committed he was. As a member of the Kitchen staff, he would lead singalongs in the dish pit as the bowls, plates, and silverware came piling in.

Jonah taught me what it meant to be comfortable in who you are as a person, and not to be concerned with what others think of you. He possessed a strong moral compass and he stuck to it.

Mike told me stories of how Jonah would storm into Mike’s office (and out of, on some occasions) if he had a moral objection to something that had occurred on camp. Jonah’s deep compassion and care for others around him truly embodied the NFTY spirit of being comfortable in your own skin.

I’m very blessed to have known and interacted with Jonah on a regular basis for the two years we were at Kutz together. His ability to have a positive affect on those around him made Kutz a better place to work and live.



Do you have a memory of Jonah at Kutz? Share it as a comment below. And please donate to our “Summer Camp ‘15″ campaign at jonahmac.org/donate. Thanks!

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