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Rabbi Zushe Wilhelm, obm

Rabbi Zushe Wilhelm, the long-time head of the Mesivta Oholei Torah (high school), founded the Lema’an Yilmedu smicha (rabbinic ordination) program, authored seforim (holy books) and was known for his Torah scholarship and knowledge, passed away on Wednesday night, the eve of 4 Shvat 5782.

He was 62.


The levaya for the rabbi took place Thursday at midday Eastern Time in Crown Heights, passing by Oholei Torah Mesivta (high school) at 1 pm and then passing by 770 Eastern Parkway at 1:15 pm before proceeding to Old Montefiore Cemetery in Queens.

Born to R’ Avrohom Dovid and Mrs. Chana Rivkah Wilhelm, Rabbi Wilhelm was named after Rabbi Yeshaya Zushe Shubov, who was known as the Boider Rav and led the Marina Roscha shul in Moscow during Soviet times. He was a descendant of the known Chassidic Rebbe R’ Zusha of Anipoli and Rabbi Yeshayahu Horowitz, known as the Shelah HaKaddosh.

As a young single Rabbi Wilhelm was sent as a talmid-sheliach to Yeshivat Tomchei Temimim in Caracas, Venezuela. He subsequently learned at the Central Tomchei Tmimim Yeshiva Lubavitch – 770 in 5741.

Following his marriage to his wife Esther Sperlin, the couple spent several years serving as Chabad emissaries in Panama in Central America, facilitating the growth of the local Jewish community.

Rabbi Wilhelm served as the Principal of the Oholei Menachem High School – Oholei Torah Mesivta in Crown Heights for 32 years. He was renowned for his phenomenal knowledge and superb explanatory skills, helping raise thousands of Chassidim and Shluchim around the world.

Rabbi Wilhelm authored several halachic works (about Torah law) including Ziv Hasheimis, Yiddish Siddur, “What’s in a Name: Laws and Customs Regarding the Naming of Children and Related Topics.” He also published a weekly publication titled “Yesh Litmoah” which was loved by its many readers.

His Jewish trivia and process of “She’eilos Lechazoroh” (questions for review) helped educators around the globe with intriguing students and imbuing a sense of curiosity in all areas of Torah.

Two years ago, he founded the American branch of the now well-known Lema’an Yilmedu organization, which provides Crown Heights residents the opportunity to learn Yoreh Deah, a tractate of Talmud, with a thorough, down-to-earth curriculum.

He is survived by his wife Esther Wilhelm – Crown Heights, their children Berele Wilhelm – Los Angeles; Rabbi Chaim Yisroel Wilhelm – Crown Heights; Rabbi Levi Wilhelm – Las Vegas; Mendy Wilhelm – Crown Heights; Mrs. Mushkee Raskin – Montego Bay, Jamaica; Mrs. Mashee Begun – Crown Heights; Mrs. Sara Shur – Crown Heights, and Moshe Wilhelm – Crown Heights; and grandchildren.

He is also survived by his mother Mrs. Chana Rivka Wilhelm (nee Lokshin) – Crown Heights and siblings Mrs. Leah Fradkin – S. Diego, California; Rabbi Moshe Wilhelm – Portland, Oregon; Rabbi Yisroel Wilhelm – Crown Heights; Mrs. Rochel Lapidus – Buenos Aires, Argentina; Rabbi Nachman Wilhelm – Monsey, NY; Mrs. Chaya Sarah Barber – Crown Heights; Rabbi Zalman Wilhelm – Crown Heights; Rabbi Motty Wilhelm – Toronto, Canada; nieces and nephews.

Baruch Dayan HaEmet, Yeshaya Zushe ben Avrohom Dovid

This report appeared first on the website.


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