Willen-Panitz Wedding

Willen-Panitz Wedding

Elyse Willen and Ryan Panitz were married Sept. 1 at The Ritz-Carlton, Cleveland, where Rabbi Hal Rudin-Ludia officiated.

Elyse is the daughter of Drs. Michael and Marlene Willen of Cleveland, and the granddaughter of the late Michael Donner and the late Stephanie Donner Hellering of Cleveland and the late Dr. Ray and Lee Willen of Cleveland.

Ryan is the son of Gary and Susie Panitz of Tucson, Ariz. (originally of Chesterfield, Mo.) and the grandson of the late Herman and Henrietta Kopel of Sioux Falls, S.D., and the late Louis and Rose Panitz of St. Louis.

Elyse earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Indiana University and an MBA from John Carroll University. She currently leads a strategic sourcing group at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

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Ryan, a Parkway Central High School graduate, earned a Bachelor of Journalism degree from Mizzou. He currently leads an inflight technology group at American Airlines.

The wedding party included the bride’s best friend, Einav Ornan, as matron of honor. Her bridesmaids were her sisters-in-law Lauren Weingardt and Kristi Willen, and her cousin, Camryn Milstein. 

The groom’s best friend, Wes Milligan, served as best man. His groomsmen were his brothers-in-law Jason Weingardt, Dr. Ben Willen and Ryan Willen, Groomsman (brother-in-law).

Tali Friedman, the daughter of the matron of honor served as flower girl. Nephews Blake and Corey Weingardt served as ring bearer.

To propose, Ryan asked Elyse to show up at the airport with a passport in hand for a mystery trip. She hopped a flight to London to meet him and they ended up in Portugal for the weekend. 

They got up early the next morning to watch the sunrise over Belem Tower. Little did Elyse know there was a photographer hiding (thanks to Flytographer) to capture the moment when he proposed. 

They spent the rest of the day eating (egg custard tarts), drinking and exploring the magnificent community of Lisbon. 

After a wedding trip to Zanzibar and Kenya in November, the couple will reside in Dallas. 

 To make a tribute in honor of the engagement of Elyse Willen and Ryan Panitz, please call the Jewish Light at 314-743-3675 or visit stljewishlight.com/donate.