Ms. Siegle graduated from Wesleyan University and received a masterâ€™s degree in sociology and education from Columbia, where Mr. Cephus is about to begin his junior year, double majoring in computer science and sustainable development. He had attended St. Johnâ€™s University in Jamaica, Queens, for two years after high school, but couldnâ€™t afford to continue so instead went into hotel management.
â€œI would say I fell in love with her within the first few dates,â€ he said.
During her summer trip, she had picked up an unmannered puppy off the streets, and Mr. Cephus impressed her with his patience, tolerance and willingness to shoulder part of what she viewed as her own burden. (The puppy, PiÃ±a, is now well-behaved and beloved. â€œSheâ€™s the best dog ever,â€ Ms. Siegle said.)
â€œIt made me understand how much he cared for living things, how dedicated he was as a caretaker in general, and how much he cared about making sure that I was not stressed out by this,â€ she said.
The couple married Aug. 22, in a tent outside the Spruce Point Inn in Boothbay Harbor, Maine, with Sally Bullard, a notary public, officiating. They had intended to have their wedding a year earlier, but postponed it because of the coronavirus pandemic. About 100 guests attended, all fully vaccinated.
One unexpected benefit of the delayed wedding was that the coupleâ€™s daughter, Summer Joy Cephus, born May 15, was a guest at the event, too.
Said Mr. Cephus, â€œHow else would all of our friends and family also get to meet our child?â€