web analytics
December 26, 2014 / 4 Tevet, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Shlomo Zakheim: Exemplar Of Chesed

Many of the speakers described the vast chesed that Reb Shlomo performed on a daily basis.
A line of ambulances. Dozens of ambulances and other emergency vehicles accompanied the hearse to JFK airport. Zakheim was buried on Har Hamenuchot in Jerusalem.

A line of ambulances. Dozens of ambulances and other emergency vehicles accompanied the hearse to JFK airport. Zakheim was buried on Har Hamenuchot in Jerusalem.

Rav Yisroel Salanter explains that the Asseres Yemei Teshuvah begins with Rosh Hashanah because Hashem knows that in order for us to do teshuvah we need “shock treatment.” For many of us this year, though, our shock came on Motzaei Rosh Hashanah with the news of the petirah of Reb Shlomo Zakheim, zt”l. So hopeful that the New Year would bring a yeshuah, the news simply crushed us.

On Rosh Hashanah every human being passes in front of Hashem in din. At Shlomo’s levayah this past Sunday, the mashgiach of Beth Medrash Govoha of Lakewood, Rav Matisyahu Salomon, shlita, suggested that perhaps the reason why Hashem took Reb Shlomo on Rosh Hashanah was to silence the keteigurim (prosecutors) who were testifying against klal Yisrael. Hashem had to bring them one person who could silence them all. He chose Reb Shlomo.

Ish Elokim” was the title that Rav Salomon bestowed on Reb Shlomo. Rabbi Yisroel Reisman, shlita, said, “Reb Shlomo walked with Hashem.” He stressed that this was done with both feet on the ground. Shlomo was very normal, a regular guy; yet so extraordinary was his love for klal Yisrael. He would help any Jew in need. And Shlomo’s youngest son, Moshe, pointed out that although his father was involved with countless individuals, he always made time for his family. He said that his father was never too busy to speak with him or his siblings when they would call.

Many of the speakers described the vast chesed that Reb Shlomo performed on a daily basis. Shlomo arranged for medical procedures for regular people who needed them. He would find the only doctor in the country who could perform the procedure and then fly the patient to the doctor. He paid for all the expenses, including the surgery. This was done anonymously, as were all of his acts of chesed.

A throng of people gathered outside Shomrei Hadas Chapels in Boro Park to pay respects to Shlomo Zakheim.

A throng of people gathered outside Shomrei Hadas Chapels in Boro Park to pay respects to Shlomo Zakheim.

Shlomo did chesed that most others were not involved in. As Rabbi Reisman mentioned, Shlomo did not fit the cookie-cutter mold of a regular person. Shlomo made it his business to visit Jonathan Pollard, Robert Manning and others in prison on a regular basis. He arranged for teams of urologists and moelim to perform thousands of brisim on Jews in Russia, Eastern Europe and South America. HaRav Chaim Kanievsky, shlita, said that Shlomo arranged for more than ten thousand brisim – and that Eliyahu Hanavi is thus going to greet him.

Shlomo was a great supporter of Chai Lifeline and Camp Simcha. Rabbi Simcha Scholar of Chai Lifeline recalled that when Shlomo first became connected to Chai Lifeline, Rabbi Scholar asked their mutual contact how he could retain Shlomo’s support. The response: “do not give him kavod.” But following his petirah, Rabbi Scholar added, we can all give him kavod.

Shlomo continued to supply helicopter rides to the children of Camp Simcha even in his weakened state of health – just several weeks before his petirah. These incredible selfless acts of chesed will surly silence the keteigurim.

We do not know about the myriad acts of chesed that Shlomo always participated in because he never spoke about them, not even to his family. And Shlomo always refrained from speaking lashon hara. One of the speakers at the levayah asked if anyone could remember a derogatory word ever coming out of Shlomo’s mouth. His closest of friends all testified that Shlomo indeed never spoke an ill word about anyone.

Mourners carrying the aron.

Mourners carrying the aron.

In many instances of Shlomo’s discreet assistance to others, his tremendous acts of kindness only became known accidentally. This is why we will never appreciate the full loss that klal Yisrael experienced with his petirah. This was because, as his son Rav Azriel said, his father acted with true hatzne’ah leches im Hashem Elokecha (walk humbly with your God). Rav Azriel explained that his father was able to accomplish this because of his awesome level of emunah in Hashem. He called him the “posek hador in emunah.”

Even in his last stage of sickness Shlomo continued to help people by arranging and paying for their surgeries. Never did he question Hashem. In fact he was quoted as saying, “Thank you, Hashem, for giving me cancer!”

Shlomo was and should continue to be an inspiration to all. He taught us that there is nothing that we cannot do or achieve, that nothing is out of reach when we make the effort and believe in Hashem.

Shlomo was given a king’s honor as he left this world. Not only by the hundreds of Hatzalah buses and emergency vehicles that escorted the aron, closing Ocean Parkway and the Belt Parkway on the way to the airport. Not only from the roster of roshei yeshiva that attended his levayah. Not only from the fact that his aron passed HaRav Kanievsky’s house so he could be melaveh the meis. The true kavod was delivered by the thousands of individuals who felt touched by Shlomo and cried at the mere sight of his aron.

Reb Shlomo is survived by his mother, Rebbetzin Sarah Zakheim; his wife, Dr. Faygie Zakheim; his siblings, Moshe Zakheim, Mrs. Rachelle Klein, and Mrs. Devorah Hamada; and his children, Michal Klerer, Rabbi Azriel Zakheim, Ariella Weiss, Rachelli Levine, and Rabbi Moshe Zakheim; and many grandchildren.

Yehei zichro baruch.

About the Author: For questions or comments, e-mail RabbiRFuchs@gmail.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

One Response to “Shlomo Zakheim: Exemplar Of Chesed

  1. Schwartzi says:

    What a huge loss for Am Yisrael. Chaval al deavdin velo mishtakchin.
    May he be a meilitz yosher for all of us.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Ayala Shapira, 11, is fighting for her life after suffering burn wounds when an Arab terrorist threw a Molotov cocktail at the car in which she was riding.
‘Slight Improvement’ in Life-threatening Condition of Firebomb Victim
Latest Indepth Stories
Bill Cosby

It shakes our sense of justice when allegations against a famed role model are covered up or ignored

MK Moshe-Feiglin

Feiglin: Only true liberty will allow us to genuinely connect to our Jewish identity.

Knesset Logo

The silver lining with early elections is the chance to change the current dysfunctional government.

Cohen-122614

The Holocaust Educational Trust Ireland informed the host he could not say “Israel or Jewish state”

It’s fascinating how sources attain the status “traditional,” or its equivalent level of kashrus.

The West needs to ensure Russia understands that aggression comes at a significant cost.

What benefit is a learning experience that leaves kids confused,disillusioned&harms self confidence?

Girlfriend and double cop-killer Ismaaiyl Brinsley apparently was influenced by Islamic extremism.

We see pictures of mosques, monuments for terrorists, illegal schools, and hundreds of apartments being built on Jewish land without repercussions. We are losing Jewish property, so it is up to us to protect it.

Thus, despite the increasingly serious problems for the mayor arising out of the current anti-police protests, Mr. de Blasio apparently will be cut no slack by those who seem to be aiming for a significant role in running the city from the streets and who will do whatever they can to prevent their momentum from ebbing.

Also left unsaid was the fact that the menorah and its oil were in the Beit HaMikdash, which of course was located on Har HaBayit – the Temple Mount that present-day Muslims claim as their own.

Despite strong pressure to throw the book at the accused, Mr. Thompson allowed him to plead guilty to assault.

A revolution is taking place between good and evil; light and darkness. Make the light activism!

Obama’s comments calling Israeli settlements “unhelpful”are harsher than prior US administrations’

More Articles from Rabbi Raphael Fuchs
Taste-of-Lomdus-logo

Rav Akiva Eiger is assuming that the logic of the halacha that both the son and his mother are obligated to honor his father and therefore he must honor his fathers wishes first, is a mathematical equation.

Taste-of-Lomdus-logo

It is clear that Tosafos maintains that only someone who lives in a house must light Chanukah candles.

But how could there have been any validity to Yosef’s allegations?

If one converts for the sole purpose of marrying a Jew the conversion is invalid.

Rashi in Shabbos 9b writes that the reason why the tefillah of Ma’ariv is a reshus is because it was instituted corresponding to the burning of the eimurim from the korbanos – which was performed at night.

We find that in certain circumstances before the Torah was actually given, people were permitted to make calculations as to what would better serve Hashem, even if it were against a mitzvah or aveirah.

It is difficult to write about such a holy person, for I fear I will not accurately portray his greatness…

The implication of the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim 233:2) is that one may not daven Minchah before six and one half hours into the day.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/shlomo-zakheim-exemplar-of-chesed/2013/09/12/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: