Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

15 Cheshvan 5766 - November 16, 2005 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








Gateshead's Ish Ho'eshkolos Is No More
A biographical appreciation of HaRav Chaim Kaufman

by R. M. D. Spiro

Part II

At the Feet of Gedolim

Rarely has there been an individual who met, admired and was admired by such a range of gedolei Yisroel. As a boy, his father took him to meet the Belzer Rebbe Reb Arele who, untypically, held his hand longer than those of many others. He knew the Satmar Rov, met the Bobover Rov and studied with the greatest diligence under all his roshei yeshiva and menahelim. Later he became close to the Beis Yisroel and the Pnei Menachem. He once visited with the Slonimer Rebbe for over 90 minutes and had close contact with the Manchester Rosh Yeshiva. Whilst Chassidus was in his genes, so to speak — his father was a warm chassidishe Yid — he drank with thirst and hisbatlus the Torah and outlook of his mentors in Gateshead Yeshiva. Both the words of gedolei mussar and gedolei Chassidus never left his mouth. Interestingly, one Rebbe would take cassettes of his shiurim along with him to listen to on walks he took.

As Rosh Hamdabrim Bechol Mokom

The name "Kaufman" means "tradesman." The posuk says: "Im tevakshenu kekesef vekamatmonim techapsenoh, oz tovin yiras Hashem" (Mishlei 2:4-5). The Chofetz Chaim frequently commented on this posuk that we need to approach Torah like a business. It may be suggested: A tradesman buys his goods in a place where they are plentiful and cheap. He then sells them where that merchandise is sought after, at a higher price.

So too, Reb Chaim built the foundations of his Torah knowledge in the Gateshead Kollel, a mokom Torah. Afterwards he exported the goods worldwide. He grew up in Gateshead. He studied for decades in its Kollel. He lived there until the end — yet metzudosoh hoysoh perusoh al pnei kol ho'oretz.

Due to his great oratorical powers and his tremendous breadth of knowledge delivered with such mesikus Hatorah, and the eidelkeit of his personality, he was a very sought- after speaker. At the Siyum HaShas in Manchester in front of 1,500, and at the siyum of Mifal HaShas in Yerushalayim; At a rally in front of thousands of ladies and at the yearly Pirchim Siyum in front of hundreds of youngsters; At a fundraising dinner for chassidishe mosdos in the United States and in 48 shiurim delivered in two weeks of an Australian tour — from the centers of Torah and Chassidus in Eretz Yisroel to places like South America and South Africa: He carried the undiluted message of Torah and avodoh.

In the Kehilloh

After the petiroh of the Gateshead Rov it was not a simple matter to find the central personality in the Kehilloh. In a town comprised of leading talmidei chachomim, and of budding bnei Torah and harassed businessmen, it is hardly easy to find a personality whom all feel able to look up to. Reb Chaim, a member of the Vaad HaRabbonim, was this personality. He also felt the weight of responsibility for all sectors of the Kehilloh. Knowing about the world and yet aloof from it, he had an uncanny ability to relate to all.

Generally, the Kaufmans were one of the pillars of the community. Throughout his life, HaRav Chaim felt part of a unique Kehilloh in postwar Klal Yisroel: a Kehilloh- family. Often he came to share in simchas even at a cost to himself in time and effort, in order to bring joy to the extended family.

His Last Months

"Master of all worlds . . . I have set Hashem before me, that You should show me additional mercy in my exile to redeem me and to inspire my heart to Your love. Then I shall observe your laws and Your decrees without suffering and I shall daven as is properly fitting and right."

He chose these words and the niggun to hear on his last day. Undoubtedly the poignant words of this tefilloh epitomize his life.

Last December, he was diagnosed as suffering from a very serious illness. Upon hearing the news, his current talmidim in Yeshivoh Letze'irim and previous talmidim rallied together to daven on his behalf. The unbelievable outpouring of tefillos and tears in towns all over the world, by Yidden from all walks of life, bore once again witness to the affection and reverence in which he was held by such a wide spectrum of Klal Yisroel.

A close talmid, R. Yisroel Moshe Blum of Kiryat Sefer, organized a large weekly Tehillim-session at the Kosel. Another talmid (who had attended his entire cycle of Minchas Chinuch), Dr. Shlomo Rutenberg, undertook the medical care with the utmost devotion. Reb Chaim continued his countless shiurim and avodas hakodesh for many months — well beyond the dire predictions.

His last shiur for the general public was delivered to the Gateshead Kollel HaRabbonim with great mesirus nefesh, simply, as he put it, as a token of gratitude for their tefillos on his behalf. His final shiur was to his beloved talmidei hayeshiva at Kol Nidrei in the kibbutz of Yeshivoh Letze'irim.

On Yom Kippur day he was no longer able to attend davening. On his last day, his close friend, HaRav E. Rosenbaum, asked him which niggun he would like to hear. He chose the Ribbon Ho'olomim (see above) whose words truly epitomize his life. During his suffering he was heard to whisper the seminal words of the Hoshanos: "Chavukoh udevukoh Boch" — about Klal Yisroel cleaving unto Hashem. Craving for closeness to Hashem had become so engraved into his neshomoh as a result of his life's avodas Hashem that in these moments, perhaps the hardest of his life, he was still able to carry on with his life's mission.

With a clear mind, after reciting Bircas HaTorah with kavonoh (before nacht) and Shema (after nacht) his neshomoh, purified by a lifelong devotion to Hashem, left his body.

Bircas Hatorah and dancing lichvod haTorah marked the end of a life whose hallmark was indeed Simchas Hatorah.


The Levaya commenced from his house and went past Yeshivoh Gedoloh where he was eulogized by the "Menahel," HaRav Ze'ev Cohen. It continued past Gateshead Kollel where his former colleague from Kollel days, HaRav Avrohom Ehrentreu (rosh kibbutz of Sunderland Yeshiva), spoke emotionally of the niftar's passionate tefillos and great learning.

The main hesped took place in the Yeshivoh Letze'irim. The senior mashgiach, HaRav Tzvi Bakst, a long-time chavrusa, spoke from the viewpoint of his orphaned talmidim. This was followed by a lengthy, deeply emotional and all-encompassing hesped by his only son, HaRav Yaakov Yosef. He tearfully described his father's multifaceted ma'alos. Finally his close friend HaRav Ezriel Rosenbaum, and a colleague at the Yeshivoh Letze'irim, HaRav A. O. Cohen, spoke heartfelt words.

The levaya then passed near Manchester for the hesped of the Rachever Rov (of the Satmar Beis Hamedrash) and the Horodonker Rebbe. It continued on to London's Adas Yisroel Synagogue in Stamford Hill where an overflowing crowd heard stirring divrei hesped.

Rarely, if ever, has London witnessed such a huge crowd at a levaya. HaRav Padva, the rov of the Union of Orthodox Hebrew Synagogues, opened the proceedings. Dayan Dunner, a close friend of Reb Chaim from their kollel days spoke with great emotion. He said that like the King read Parshas Hakhel in the presence of all segments of Klal Yisroel, so too Reb Chaim (Man malchei? Rabbonon.) had the uncanny ability to reach the hearts of young boys and mature adults, of men and women, of outstanding roshei yeshivos and novices to Yiddishkeit, of warm chassidishe baalei batim and young Seminary talmidos.

In our day and age, many a person suffers from what is ultimately caused by his middos (e.g. jealousy). In contrast, Reb Chaim's simchas hachaim was evidence of his pure and unselfish personality.

HaRav Matisyohu Solomon had flown in through the night from Lakewood. He reminisced about their youth together in Gateshead, how, "bema'alelov yisnaker na'ar" [how conduct in young years shows up the character]. The final and perhaps most heart-wrenching hesped was delivered by his nephew, HaRav Avrohom Sonnenschein.

Under time pressure the levaya then continued to Golders Green where HaRav Elchonon Padwa, the President of the Union, delivered divrei hesped. At 10.00 p.m. the niftar was flown to Eretz Yisroel.

At the huge levaya in Jerusalem on Erev Shabbos, the first maspid was HaRav Tuvioh Weiss (Gavad of the Eida HaChareidis). He noted that Chazal allowed some degree of exaggeration in hespedim. In the case of Reb Chaim however, whom he knew well from the age of 13, he wanted to declare before all without the slightest exaggeration: Reb Chaim was literally one of the yechidei seguloh in the entire world!

Further maspidim were HaRav E. Falk (maggid shiur and posek in Gateshead), HaRav M.J. Karnowsky (mashgiach of Gateshead Yeshivoh Gedoloh), his only son (one of Yerushalayim's choshuve bnei aliyoh and a member of HaRav M.Z. Silberberg's Kollel), his son-in- law HaRav A. Breisch (a maggid shiur in Karlin Yeshiva) and his son- in-law HaRav S. Lipshitz (a marbitz Torah in Tzans, Jerusalem), HaRav Ezriel Jaffe (rosh yeshiva of Yeshivoh Letze'irim, Gateshead) and HaRav Y.L. Wittler (mashgiach of Kibbutz of Yeshivoh Letze'irim).

An Appreciation: His Uniqueness

As is well-known, the sefer Minchas Chinuch has enjoyed an absolutely amazing popularity in Klal Yisroel. The recent new edition has sold hundreds of thousands of copies. Others have written important seforim on the mitzvos, yet the Minchas Chinuch's is by far the most widespread sefer in its field.

HaRav Shach explained this in a most interesting way, saying that the author of Minchas Chinuch had an extraordinary degree of yiras Shomayim. Others may have written somewhat similar seforim on the Taryag Mitzvos yet Hashem bestowed upon the Minchas Chinuch an extra measure of blessing.

HaRav Shach said that this was a way of understanding the ma'amar Chazal: Kol mi sheyeish bo yiras Shomayim devorov nishmo'im — Whoever has yiras Shomayim, his words are heard. (Reb Chaim said this in a hesped on HaRav Shach, and in a siyum on his shiur on Minchas Chinuch, in the name of his nephew HaRav D. Zimmerman who was close to HaRav Shach.)

In much the same way it may be said: Others have also delivered numerous wonderful shiurim. Yet few achieved his amazing popularity throughout five continents. Is this not evidence, along the lines of the interpretation of HaRav Shach, that he possessed an extra measure of yiras Shomayim?

The uniqueness of Reb Chaim lay in his multifaceted abilities. In a world of specialization, which is also felt in the Olom Hatorah, he was at home in Kodshim, in yeshivishe masechtos, in Mo'ed, in halochoh, and in inspiring Chassidishe ma'ases as well as in sharp divrei mussar. While easily approachable by people from all walks of life, he was yet above them in his private avodoh.

Keneged arbo'o bonim dibroh Torah." Explained Reb Chaim Brisker: A math book that is suitable for a young child is boring for an adult. On the other hand a math book suitable for an adult is beyond the comprehension of a child. In contrast, the Torah is able to speak to each and every person.

Another facet of Reb Chaim's uniqueness was his ability to speak to people of all types, ages and levels. As he became more well-known, as his ex-talmidim began to fill the four corners of the world, he became a sought-after speaker.

He addressed audiences of thousands at rallies. He spoke with equal passion to accomplished talmidei chachomim as to young school boys. He could find the way to a Chassidishe yingel's heart as much as much as to the heart of a youngster who had had little exposure to Yiddishkeit.

He spoke to men, women, Seminary girls, young Bar Mitzvoh boys. Some speak beyond their listener's ability to comprehend. Some would speak beyond the listener's ability to relate, to draw towards chizuk. Reb Chaim was forever spot on.

One of his hallmarks was the ability to size up his audience. Like a surgeon who has to mark the area to be operated on, he would measure what could be said, how it could be said, and how much was "digestible." As Chosson Torah in the Kollel HaRabbonim he offered a lomdish chaburoh on "Ta'aseh Velo Min Ho'osui," but when speaking to young talmidim he told a striking story from the Medrash.

His command of both Yiddish and English was equally good; and he easily used the language most suited to reach the intellect and heart in every case. Whether as guest of honor in front of 2,000, or with an eight-year-old boy at his Shabbos table — he found the right word for the right person.

"And Esther found favor in the eyes of all who saw her . . . Esther did not reveal her birthplace." A person can be quiet in seventy languages! If his birthplace is unknown, he is not aligned with any one nation out of seventy. Similarly, a person who draws from the wellsprings of all nations will find favor in the eyes of all.

From yet a third aspect he was also unique. He drew from the wellsprings of Torah that originate in all the various sectors of Klal Yisroel. He was as familiar with the works of the great baalei mussar as with the great Chassidic seforim. He could quote from the Chido and the Chasam Sofer. He was admired and respected by Yidden from all circles and walks of life — ardent Chassidim and young talmid from the olom hayeshivos.

Just as he was inspired by gedolim and seforim of all types, so too he could inspire Yidden of all types.

Rabbeinu Yonah explains that baalei ta'avoh cannot form a common cause. Since people are so different from each other in their ta'avos and middos, there is little basis for common effort.

On the other hand, those whose main interest and joy in life is rotzon Hashem are bonded together by an overriding common interest. They can form an, "Agudoh achas la'asos Retzoncho beleivov sholem (See Si'ach Yitzchok, Shacharis of Rosh Hashonoh).

Everybody realized that Reb Chaim had one overriding interest in life: rotzon Hashem. Yidden of all types who look for the same thing found in his words and personality a tremendous inspiration.

He once declared in front of hundreds of children that "Soton" stands for: "S" = shtusim; "T" = tapes; "N" = newspapers. He used his faculties of speech for Torah, rather than politics or loshon hora (=shtusim). He used his faculty of hearing for shiurim rather than music tapes. Finally, he used his eyes only for Torah. When walking on the street, even when often surrounded by talmidim on all sides, his eyes seemed to gaze at his shoes. It is little wonder that a pure mouth merited to encourage so many thousands in their derech HaTorah. It is remarkable that the bonds of love which were created between Rebbe and talmid endured for so many years, beyond the gulf of time and distance.

A Study In Contrasts

The Megilloh related that Esther did not tell anybody about her family. Chazal comment that she descended from Shaul Hamelech. Shaul knew how to be quiet. When the novi Shmuel anointed him as a future king, Shaul returned home and revealed to nobody the momentous honor which had been bestowed upon him (Shmuel I chapter 10). Obviously, once Shaul became the acting king he did not refrain from stating his da'as Torah in the most explicit terms.

Reb Chaim Shaul was a study in contrasts. He was at once most famous and most concealed, quiet by nature and yet a fiery orator, modest and yet sure of himself, an oved Hashem betzin'oh and a person who was mafkir his kochos for Klal Yisroel, approachable by all and above all. He was deeply involved with both the Chassidishe and yeshiva world, with simple boys and great talmidei chachomim. He spoke as guest orator to thousands — yet did not hesitate to teach a small class of young boys.

The petiroh of this multifaceted talmid chochom who carried the flame of Torah to five continents through his oratory plunged talmidim and listeners into deep sadness.

I never ceased to marvel how a person who was so quiet and retiring by disposition could emerge from his shell with the booming message of Torah, not just among his talmidim but literally on five continents, wherever he was called.

Chazal define an Ish Ho'eshkolos as somebody who excels in all areas to an equal extent (See end of maseches Sotoh). If you looked for an inspiring guest speaker, you could turn to Reb Chaim. If you looked for a problem in the sugya, you could turn to Reb Chaim. If you looked for bekiyus in halachic problems, you could turn to Reb Chaim. If you were searching for a living inspiration in avodas hatefilloh, you could turn to Reb Chaim. If you looked for somebody able to come down to the children's world, you could turn to Reb Chaim. If Seminary girls needed divrei chizuk before Rosh Hashonoh, you could turn to Reb Chaim. If a father needed advice, you could turn to Reb Chaim. And if a poor man needed support, you could turn to Reb Chaim.

The address was always the same. And the answer was almost invariably the same: Yes, I will try to help.

I never ceased to marvel how a man whose chochmas haTorah is in everybody's mouth and who was so balanced in his multifaceted avodas Hashem could be so modest and straightforward. Perhaps the Torah, the privilege to inspire and teach others, gave him such tremendous satisfaction that he did not need to feed his ego an artificial diet!

His Avodas Halev: Tefilloh, Mitzvos and Tzedokoh

Perhaps the most private part of his avodas Hashem was his private conversations with the Ba'al Horachamim. Truly Chazal define tefilloh as "avodoh shebelev." His care in pronouncing every word was evident, but that it was a direct outpouring of feelings of great intensity was only discernible by those close to him. Few knew that under the shield of his tallis he would shed copious tears.

On the leil Rosh Hashonoh, Shemoneh Esrei could take him one-and-a-half hours. When he "emerged" from the tallis his face was a shining sun. In line with his natural tznius the outpouring of pent-up emotions and deep feelings was only a matter between him and his Maker.

He kept his fixed place in Kollel for decades (for Bein Hazmanim). Chazal tell us that a person who sets aside a fixed place for davening is privileged to merit the assistance of "the G-d of Avrohom." Reb Chaim actually davened for decades in the same place in the Kollel (whenever he did not daven in Yeshiva).

Not only was the place a matter of importance, this signified his whole approach to tefilloh. He often remonstrated with young boys: Why are you in a hurry? What train do you have to catch when speaking to the Master of the World?

Every Kabolas Shabbos, when saying Bo'i Besholom and Mizmor shir leyom haShabbos he felt such an urge to kirvas Hashem, to kedushas Shabbos, that he literally had to take hold of himself and rein in his emotions which were about to burst forth. The talmidim behind could only see the color of his neck that became red, yet his neighbor in the front of the Yeshivoh beis hamedrash realized that he, the person who was so controlled and so regular in his emotion, was simply overwhelmed by his deveikus leHashem.

He would make the greatest effort to remain calm on the outside. When the (first) Gulf War started, Reb Chaim was in his learning room. The house was quiet at the late hour. In the presence of none but the Ba'al Horachamim (as far as he knew), he pronounced the holy words of Tehillim with such heartfelt tears, with such agonizing entreaty, that the neighbor (who in fact saw it through his window) will never forget that awesome sight.

A boy was once asked where he would daven on Tisha B'Av. He replied: "Every year I daven in Yeshiva Ketanoh. I see Reb Chaim crying from beginning to end. This year he is ill and not there. Where will I get inspired?"

The "bottled up" extent of his warm avodas Hashem would open up on Simchas Torah. This somewhat shy person became the center of the celebrations in a crowd of great talmidei chachomim (the Beis Hamedrash of the Gateshead Kollel HaRabbonim). After delivering stirring words on simchah shel Torah his exuberant simchah and his most lively rikudim which belied his true age, lent a unique flavor to simchah shel Torah.

The combination of broad knowledge of halochoh with intense yearning for avodas Hashem was the catalyst for punctilious dikduk in mitzvoh performance, a dikduk which went hand-in-hand with great simchah. Whether a specially-ordered Esrog purchased at a price way beyond normal market prices; whether the construction of a "Chazon Ish Succoh" (quite unusual in Chutz Lo'oretz), or numerous other hiddurim — every mitzvoh was a joyous opportunity for avodas Hashem!

Indeed, simchah shel mitzvoh expressed itself in the way he would participate in the chassunos of his talmidim and Kehilloh members. He would dance with all his might, often being the center of the rikudim. When coming home, his shirt was literally wet [as is told of the Chasam Sofer after returning from his shiur].

When his father was diagnosed as suffering from a serious illness, an illness from which he never recovered, Chaim overcame his love of Torah and put kibbud Av Ve'Eim first: He stopped his sidrei limud. Day and night he helped his father. He was his father's nurse, his company and his joy in life. To see the suffering did not come easy - - but the mitzvoh was paramount.

His generosity was a byword amongst meshulochim. Once a collector came and Reb Chaim told him: Really I cannot afford it at the moment, but Chazal say, "Levu olai va'Ani porei'a (borrow and I will repay)," so I will try my best. He proceeded to donate hundreds of pounds.

Upon hearing of a disaster, he did not wait until approached. He would ask his son in Jerusalem: Has a fund already been formed to support the orphans. Why not? I want to send tzedokoh. One of his relatives with whom he had close connections was interested in hearing personal divrei mussar. Reb Chaim refrained. The only thing he asked was: Are you giving enough tzedokoh?

Chazal tell us that talmidei chachomim "increase peace in the world." HaRav Yechezkel Abramsky (former head of London Beth Din and author of Chazon Yechezkel) explained this in a remarkable way: Many a person may be insulted, peeved or disturbed by what others do to him. However if his main interest is in Torah, if he finds his satisfaction in life in finding pearls of Torah-wisdom, these insults will remain what they are: minor disturbances which can be "swallowed" without "shooting back." On the other hand if he is in search of temporary rather than timeless matters, in search of satisfaction in worldly matters and of honor, then minor slights can turn into major hindrances of what he views as his joy in life. Little wonder then that davka talmidei chachomim are a source of peace in this world. They are the ones who forgive and overlook.

Reb Chaim's middas hasavlonus and vatronus, a central aspect of his personality (as stressed by HaRav M. Salomon in his hesped), manifested itself in many different ways. This included getting along with all sorts of characters, bearing with a slower chavrusa, bearing with (on occasion) childish talmidim and giving up large sums of money if he felt this would be in furtherance of peace.

Many have testified that despite his contact with hundreds and perhaps thousands of people, he was niftar without leaving behind a single enemy. In Kollel it was well-known that if an avreich was left for some time without a chavrusa (for example, due to illness or childbirth), Reb Chaim would easily be prepared to learn with him.

He was easygoing. He made demands on himself rather than on others. Once a can (of drink) landed on top of his head, having been thrown carelessly out of a window. The unfortunate boy came shamefacedly to apologize, but Reb Chaim made no issue of it. He simply changed the subject to an inyan of Torah.

His pnimiyus was such that it conveyed itself to the talmidim and listeners without any outside trappings. For many years he was unique amongst maggidei shiurim in walking around with a simple jacket and hat. He truly found his satisfaction in Torah. Other things did not matter.

On Purim an inquisitive bochur asked him how he had reached his madreigoh. Reb Chaim stressed that gadlus is reached davka by small matters. Ben Azzai said [and practiced] to pursue the easy mitzvoh, not to disdain any person, however insignificant he may seem. Is this not remarkable? Ben Azzai, who towered so much above his generation that the whole world was like a garlic peel in comparison to him, bothered to run after an easy, seemingly insignificant mitzvoh? And of all people it is he who attaches importance to every person! The reason is that great personalities realize that they only reached their position by climbing in small but steady steps. (He also quoted in this connection a most interesting Chasam Sofer on Shabbos 112b.)

His Approach to Learning: Tuv Ta'am Voda'as Lamdeni, ki Bemitzvosechoh He'emonti

Reb Chaim's approach to learning could be summed up in Dovid Hamelech's words: "Tuv ta'am voda'as lamdeni, ki bemitzvosechoh he'emonti." Allow me to delve into the deeper meaning of the mitzvos; Let me understand their ta'amim (Tehillim 119:66). This will add immeasurably to the ta'am of Torah and the ta'am of keeping mitzvos. Yet however intellectually demanding this pursuit should be, however searching the questions, it is soundly based on, "ki bemitzovsechoh he'emonti." First an unquestioning emunoh, then the research full of questions into the deeper recesses of the ta'amei hamitzvos, the Chachmei HaShas, and the gedolei hachassidus vehayiroh. (See R. Hirsch's Tehillim commentary and Rambam, end of Hilchos Me'ilah).

Reb Chaim saw immense importance in every granule of Torah. The unbelievable range of his knowledge was in part the result of his assiduousness in noting down Torah. Whether it was the shiurim in yeshiva, a droshoh in shul, a good question by a bochur, or a valuable explanation in the course of a droshoh at a chasunah — it was all recorded meticulously. In fact he had a notebook where he recorded divrei Torah heard during a holiday in Switzerland. How often do we visit a godol, hear an inspiring shiur — and it evaporates into the realm of forgetfulness? Reb Chaim implored his talmidim: Use your pen!

One of the shiurim he attended was delivered in a very boring way. Most listeners dreamt. There was one talmid who overlooked the "outer trappings" and cherished the content. Not only did he listen avidly — if he could not write it down at the time he would take careful notes on a later occasion. In his adult years he would quite often quote beautiful divrei Torah from them. This was symptomatic of Reb Chaim's thirst for Torah, a thirst which would look for the inner meaning despite outer shortcomings.

Normal — And Yet Extraordinary

There is something remarkable about Reb Chaim that is an inspiration to us all. He was orphaned as a bochur and did not come from a rabbinical family. He grew up in times where learning was hardly a full-time pursuit. He did not possess phenomenal faculties. Yet he had raised himself by dint of his own choice and toil to such heights in Torah that the wealth and breadth of his knowledge was truly dazzling. If he managed to raise himself above his times and background it was the result of his own choice! Nobody foisted it upon him. In the final analysis he and his eizer kenegdo chose their own program in life! His achievements are within our reach! (From Dayan Dunner's and Rav A. Sonnenschein's hespedim.)

As one colleague at Yeshiva Letze'irim put it: None of us are born illuyim. But all of us have the choices which faced Reb Chaim. Most of us are intelligent, we can learn like the boy Chaim, we also possess a pen. What do we choose?

Alas, the voice which had thundered so forcefully yet gracefully from Australia to South America, from Jerusalem to Lakewood, will be heard no more. Talmidim have lost their Rebbe, Chassidim have lost their inspiration, baalei batim have lost their mentor. HaRav HaGaon Ploni, Mr. Yid, Mrs. Yiddene and little Yingele have all lost the person who managed to touch their neshomoh. Gateshead has lost its ambassador of international repute. Above all, the Ribono Shel Olom has lost the pure amplifier of his message in This World.

The author would like to place on record the great assistance provided by the family. Due to the length of the article, inaccuracies may have crept in. Comments and corrections would be appreciated. Fax: 44191-490 1842


All material on this site is copyrighted and its use is restricted.
Click here for conditions of use.