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11 Sivan, 5775 / Friday, May 29, 2015
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Compiled by Reb Manny Saltiel
Select Month:  
1 Cheshvan

Rav Yosef Engel, rav of Krakow and Vienna (1859-1919). Born in Austrian Poland, his rebbe refused to teach him any longer when he reached the age of 12, and between that age and his marriage at 19, he wrote eleven sefarim. Among his sefarim were Gilyonei Hashas, Shiv'im Panim LaTorah Lekach Tov, Esvan D'Oraysa, and Beis HaOtzar, a Talmudic encyclopedia. His only child, Miriam, married the heir to the leadership of the Kotzker chassidim, but he abdicated that position in order to remain near his father-in-law, Rav Yosef. At age 46, Rav Yosef left his wealthy father-in-law's home and, for the first time, had to seek a living. He found a position as one of several rabbinical judges in Krakow. During World War I, Rav Yosef fled with hundreds of other Rabbis to Vienna, where he died.

Rav Yisrael Shapira (spira), the Bluzhover Rebbe (1890-1989). A grandson of the Bnei Yissoschar, Rav Tzvi Elimelech of Dinov. His divrei torah on the parashios and Yomim Tovim were published by his talmidim in the sefer Shufra D’Yisrael in 2007.

Rav Yissachar Dov Ber, the Velbrozher Rebbe, author of Avodas Yissachar (1877)

Rav Akiva Meir, Velbrozher Rebbe, the Divrei Haam, son of the Avodas Yissachar (1918)

Rav Shmuel di Modena, the Maharashdam (1545). [2 Cheshvan, according Yated 20006]

2 Cheshvan

Rav Baruch Hager, the Seret-Viznitz Rebbe, the Makor Baruch (1895-1963). Born to Rav Yisrael of Vizhnitz and Rebbetzin Hinda, a daughter of Rav Meir Horowitz of Dzikov, Rav Baruch was named after his grandfather, the Imrei Baruch of Vizhnitz, who had passed away two years earlier. In 1912, Rav Baruch married Henia, a daughter of Rav Yissachar Dov of Belz. He married a second time, to Tzyril, a daughter of Rav Eliezer Nisan of Dzikov/Tsfas, in 1923. He then became rav of Polein-Riskova, and then served as the rav of Kotzman, Romania, for nine years. He established a Talmud Torah, a Beis Yaakov school and worked extensively for Agudas Yisrael. In 1935, Rav Baruch moved to Seret, a Romanian town of about 2,000 Jews. The Ahavas Yisrael passed away soon afterwards and Rav Baruch became the Admor of Seret-Vizhnitz. It is estimated that of about 150,000 Romanian Jews exiled to Transnistria (including all those from Seret), some 90,000 perished of hunger, cold and persecution. Rav Baruch was ransomed for a huge sum in Adar of 1944 and made his way back to Romania. He finally moved to Antwerp, Belgium in 1946 together with his brother, the Imrei Chaim, and they stayed there for close to a year. He arrived in Eretz Yisrael in Sivan 1947, and set off to Haifa where he set up his court. There Rav Baruch established a yeshivah, a Talmud Torah and other Torah institutions. This laid the ground for the establishment of the famous community of Ramat Vizhnitz, built on the side of Haifa's Mount Carmel, laying its foundation stone on the 3rd day of Tammuz, 1954. Sadly, Rav Baruch passed away at the age of sixty-eight before the culmination of his building project.

Rav Elazar Simcha Wasserman (1992). The oldest son to his illustrious father, Rav Elchanan Wasserman, and a nephew of Rav Chaim Ozer Grodzensky, Rav Simcha learned at Novardok for several years, beginning shortly after his Bar Mitzvah, under the Alter of Novardok. He was also very close to the Chafetz Chaim. After his last visit with him, his father sent him to Strasbourg, France, where he started a yeshiva (at the time, the only yeshiva in France). He stayed until 1938, when he moved to America. He first taught at Torah Vodaas, where he became close to Rav Shraga Feivel Mendlowitz. He worked closely with Rav Aharon Kotler in the Vaad Hatzalah during WWII. In 1944, Rav Simcha established the Bais Yehuda Day School in Detroit, the first in Michigan, and appointed Rav Avraham Abba Freedman as a Rebbe. Their first Shavuos, they were the only two to learn all night in the Beis Midrash. When Rav Simcha left in 1953, he left Rav Avraham Abba, who stayed another 50 years. He then founded the West Coast Talmudic Seminary (WCTS), or Ohr Elchanan (named after his father) in Los Angeles. He asked Chabad to take over the building and school in 1977. In 1979, he and his rebetzen (daughter of the Novardok rav, Rav Meir Abowitz) fulfilled a lifelong dream by moving to Eretz Yisrael. Together with Rav Moshe Chadash, he established Yeshiva Ohr Elchanan in Yerushalayim. Rav Simcha and his rebbetzin never had children. Yet, Rav Simcha was considered by many to be a leading authority on the subject of child-rearing.

3 Cheshvan

Rav Yisrael of Ruzhin (1797-1850). Born to Reb Shalom, the Rebbe of Prohibisht (who was a son of Reb Avraham HaMalach, the son of the Maggid of Mezerich). He was engaged to the Rav of Berditchev at the age of seven; six years later, the chasuna took place. When Reb Yisrael turned sixteen his older brother, Reb Avraham (who had succeeded their father), was niftar, leaving no children. He was then succeeded by Reb Yisrael. When word reached the Rebbe that the Russian Czar intended to build a big church in the Old City of Yerushalayim, the Rebbe summoned Reb Nisan Bak who lived in Yerushalayim. Reb Nisan arrived there a few days ahead of the Russians and succeeded in buying the plot of land. The Czar was forced to buy a different plot of land, known today as the Russian Compound. The shul was known as the "Reb Nisan Bak Shul" and stood until 1948 when it was destroyed by the Arabs. Following the orders of the Czar, the Rebbe was locked up in the Kiev dungeons. The Rebbe spent 22 months locked in a small dark and damp cellar. A few days after the Rebbe was freed he fled Russia and settled in the town of Sadiger. The Rebbe's derech was carried on through his six sons. The Rebbe's oldest son, Reb Shalom Yosef, was niftar less than a year after his father and was succeeded by his son Reb Yitzchak, who became the first Bohusher Rebbe. The Ruzhiner's second son, Reb Avraham Yaakov, took his father's place in Sadiger. He had two sons, the eldest, Reb Yitzchak, was the first Boyaner Rebbe and the younger son, Reb Yisrael, was rebbe in Sadiger. The third son of the Ruzhiner was Reb Dov Ber who was rebbe in Lieov and the fourth son, Reb Menachem Nachum, was rebbe in Sthefanesht. The fifth son was Reb Dovid Moshe, the Chortkover Rebbe, and the sixth son was Reb Mordechai Shraga, the Husyatiner Rebbe. The Ruzhiner also had four daughters. The third daughter, Miriam, was married to Reb Menachem Mendel of Vishnitz, founder of the Vishnitzer dynasty.

Rav Yitzchak, son of Rav Chaim of Volozhin

Rav Eliezer of Dzikov (1860)

Rav Yosef Zundel of Salant (Lithuania) (1786-1865), teacher of R’ Yisrael Salanter; learned under Rav Chaim Volozhiner, then after his petira in 1821, he would make trips to learn with Rav Akiva Eiger. Moved to Eretz Israel December 3, 1837. Father-in-law of Rav Shmuel Salant.

Rav Yehuda Leib of Kapust (1866)

Rav Eliyahu Horoshovsky, Rav of Drohbitz and author of Pnei Eliyahu and Ezur Eliyahu (1883).

Rav Yitzchak Zelig Morgenstern, the Sokolover Rebbe (1864-1939). Born in Kotzk, he was the great - grandson of the Kotzker Rebbe. Married at the age of 18, he became Rav of Sokolov, a town near Shedlitz, at the age of 30. There he established the Yeshiva Beis Yisrael. In 1905, he succeeded his father as the Rebbe of Pilov. After a visit to Eretz Yisrael in 1924, he exhorted his followers to leave the Diaspora and settle the land. After the outbreak of World War II, he moved to Otwock, a village outside Warsaw. His eldest son, the Rabbi of Wengrov was stabbed to death by the Germans.

Rav Shabsi Sheftel Weill, Rav of Simani, Hungary (1943).

Rav Mordechai Miller, principal of Gateshead Seminary (1920-2000); one of the closest students of Rav Eliyahu Dessler. R. Miller held a postgraduate degree in law. He had a promising future in the professional world. His uncle had a law firm in London and with his great talents he would have been given a good position. But he gave it all up in order to spend his life al haTorah ve'al ho'avodoh.

Rav Avraham Aba Zions (1911-1995). Born in Brisk, Poland. His father passed away when Rav Aba was just nine-years-old. His mother would bring him to one of the talmidei chachomim in Brisk to have him tested every week. When Rav Aba was twelve-years-old, he was sent him to learn at the yeshiva of Rav Moshe Sokolovsky, author of the Imrei Moshe. Rav Aba was very close to the Imrei Moshe until the latter's petirah in 1931, and he assisted with the publishing of the Imrei Moshe's sefer on Maseches Beitzah, "Meleches Yom Tov." After a few years, Rav Aba went to Kaminetz to learn by Rav Baruch Ber Lebowitz. In or about the year 1936, Rav Aba returned to Brisk, starting a Talmud Torah there. Shortly after the outbreak of the war, Rav Aba escaped to Vilna. He was instrumental in the printing of Rav Baruch Ber's sefer Birchas Shmuel. From there he joined the Mirrer Yeshiva bochurim as they traveled to Kobe, Japan, and eventually to Shanghai, China. After the war, Rav Aba came to New York and accepted a position as Rav of Congregation Knesses Israel in The Bronx, where he served for 28 years. In 1948, Rav Aba married Rivka Tellem, of Tavrig, Lithuania, whose family had settled in Newark.

Rav Shimon Groner, Mashgiach, Yeshiva Rabbeinu Chaim Berlin (1932-2005). Born in Brownsville, NY, to Rabbi Schnayer Zalman and Fayga Rochel Groner. Reb Schnayer Zalman was born in Yerushalayim, a scion of the well-known Grossman family, and he was a talmid of Yeshivas Eitz Chaim. He passed away when Shimon was only fourteen. Reb Shimon went to Chaim Berlin, where the Rosh Yeshiva, Rav Yitzchak Hutner treated Shimon like a son. Rabbi Groner was married in 1959 to Nechama Dubba Fishbein and continued his learning in the Kollel Gur Aryeh of Chaim Berlin. He taught the seventh and ninth grades in Yeshiva Ohr Yisrael of Forest Hills and from there was called by Rav Hutner to help found the Mesivta Chaim Berlin in Flatbush. After four years, he became a maggid shiur in the beis medrash, and in 1978 was appointed mashgiach ruchni, a post he held for his remaining 27 years.

4 Cheshvan

Rav Kalonimus Kalman Shapira, Piasetsna Rebbe, author of Chovas Hatalmidim and Aish Kodesh (1889-1944). His father, Rav Elimelech of Grodzisk, was a direct descendant of the Magid of Kozhnitz and of the "Noam Elimelech" of Lizhensk. He was named Kalonimus Kalman after his maternal grandfather, the Maor Vashemesh. In 1905, Rav Kalonimus Kalman married Rachel Chaya Miriam, the daughter of Rav Yerachmiel Moshe of Kozhnitz. She helped him prepare his drashas and seforim, even adding pertinent insights of her own. After the Warsaw Ghetto uprising was crushed in Nissan 1943, Rav Klonimus Kalmish was taken to the Trevaniki work camp near Lublin. Prisoners who were completely "worked out" by exhaustion and starvation were removed and sent to the Treblinka and Rav Klonimus Kalmish met his death there on 4 Cheshvan, 1944.

Rav Aryeh Leib [Aryeh Zev] (“Reb Leib”) Gurwitz, rosh yeshivas Gateshead, author of Roshei She’arim (1982)

Rav Yaakov Yitzchak Dan Landa, the Strikover Rebbe (1943). The son of Rav Elimelech Menachem Mendel Landau, he was murdered by the Nazis.

Rav Yoav Yehoshua Weingarten of Kintzk, the Chelkas Yoav (1845-1923). His foundation in learning was established by Rav Zev Nachum Borenstein, the Agudas Eizov, but his rav muvhak was his son, Rav Avraham Borenstein, the Avnei Nezer, who was only 6 years his elder. In 1883, Rav Yoav accepted the positions of Rav and Rosh yeshiva in Litomirsk. In 1889, he became Rav of Gustinin, and founded a yeshiva there. From 1894 until his petira, he served as Rav in Kintzk. In 1894, he published Chlkas Yoav. He also published a sefer called Kava Dekesheisa, 103 unanswered kushyos on Shas intended to whet the minds of bnei yeshiva. After the petira of the Avnei Nezer, Rav Yoav accepted the authority of his son, the Shem MiShmuel. After his own petira, his only son, Rav Meir succeeded him as Rav of Kintzk. His son held the post for 27 years until he and his entire family were murdered. [3 Cheshvan, per Hamadia 2006]

5 Cheshvan

Rav Tzvi Hirsh Kalisher

Rav Moshe Birdogo, son of Rav Avraham. Rav Moshe resided in western Morocco and was known as the Rosh Mashbir (1730)

Rav Avraham Halevi Zions, rosh yeshivas Knesses Yisrael in New York

Rav Avraham Rice, pioneer of the Baltimore Jewish community and founder of one of the first Hebrew schools in the U.S.

6 Cheshvan

Rav Yehuda Hachosid, founder of the Churva shul in Yerushalayim (1700)

Rav Shlomo Dovid Yehoshua Weinberg, the Admor Hatzair of Slonim (1943)

Rav Yechiel Menachem of Alexander-America (1988)

7 Cheshvan

Rav Yehuda Meir Shapiro of Lublin (1887-1933). His father, Rav Yaakov Shimshon Katz of Shatz, Romania, was a descendent of Rav Pinchas Koretz, a disciple of the Baal Shem Tov. His mother, Margala, was the daughter of Rav Shmuel Yitzchak Schor, author of Minchas Shai, and a descendent of the author of Tevu’as Shor. He was also a descendent of Rav Bechor Shor of Orleans, one of the Baalie Tosefos. He was married in 1906 and took his first appointment, Rav of Galina, in 1911. In 1921, he became Rav of Sanok, then in 1924 Rav of Piotrkov. It was while there that he wrote his sefer Or HaMeir. Also in 1923, he began the first cycle of Daf Yomi, having shared this idea at the first Knessiah Gedolah of Agudath Yisrael the previous year. That first cycle began on Rosh Hashana in 1923 and was completed 2702 days later on Tu Bishvat in 1931. His other major project was to found the yeshiva Chachmei Lublin, in 1930.

Rav Simcha Elberg, editor of Pardes journal

Rav Yehuda Tzvi Eichenstein of Rozdol (or Rozla), author of Daas Kedoshim (1791-1847). The son of Rav Moshe of Sambor and son-in-law and successor of Rav Zvi Hirsch of Zidachov, he became the Rebbe of Rozdol and was considered one of the leading kabbalists of his generation.

Rav Nosson Dovid Rabinowitz of Shidlova [or Shidlovtze] (1865)

Rav Yerachmiel Tzvi of Biala-Shedlitz (1905)

Rav Yisrael Weltz, Rav of Budapest and author of Teshuvos Divrei Yisrael (1973)

Rav Avraham Meisles, mechutan of the Rema (1599)

Rav Shimon Deutsch of Dobormil, author of Nachalas Shimon (1801)

Rav Tzvi Hersh of Tomoshov, a talmid of Rav Menachem Mendel of Kotzk (1870)

Rav Dovid of Sevorn (1914)

8 Cheshvan

Rav Menachem Nachum Kaplan (Nachumke) of Horodna, Lithuania (1811-1879). When he was nine years olf, he lived in the home of Reb Yehuda Leib Ganker and learned with this wealthy man every morning. Later, he wandered through Lithuania until he came to Amshina, where he studied under Rav Avraham Kahane. Eventually, he was accepted to the Mirrer yeshiva and became close to its mashgiach, Rav Yisrael Heller. He married the daughter of wealthy man, but after a number of years, his father-in-law died. Poverty- stricken, Reb Nachumke took a job as a shamash in the Chevras Shas Beis Midrash in Korodna. However, his fame spread, and many throughout eastern Europe came to observe him and learn from him. Among those was the Chafetz Chaim, then only 15 years old.

Rav Yaakov Rosenheim, founder of Agudas Yisrael (1870-1965).

Rav Meir of Narbonne (HaMeili) (1190-1263), author of Sefer HaMeoros (halachic material on Berachos, Chullin, and Seder Moed). Died in Toledo, Spain.

Rav Meshulam Shaltiel (1870-1926). Born in Sofia, he moved to Yerushalayim while still very young.

Rav Moshe Yosef HaKohen Tawil, zaken rabbanei Aram Soba (Aleppo, Syria). Founded the Degel HaTorah yeshivah with Rav Shlomo Zafrani.

9 Cheshvan

Rabbeinu Asher ben Yechiel, the Rosh (1250-1327). One of the three primary rishonim on whom the Rav Yosef Karo relied for the Shulchan Aruch. Rav Asher’s family traced its lineage to Rabbeinu Gershon. Rav Asher learned under Rav Meir of Rotenberg. After 10 years as the successor of Rav Meir and the leader of German Jewery, he escaped German persecution and settled in Toledo, Spain.

Rav Yosef Yehuda Leib Bloch (1860-1930). Born in Rusein, he succeeded his father-in-law, Rav Eliezer Gordon, as Rosh Yeshiva of the Telshe Yeshiva. Telz is one of the oldest towns in Lithuania, situated in the north-western part of Lithuania on the shores of Lake Mastis, and was already mentioned in the chronicles of a Crusader Order in 1320. Jews settled in Telz at the beginning of the 17th century. 2,500 people lived in Telz in 1797, of them 1,650 were Jews (66%). By 1870 Telz had 6,481 residents, including 4,399 Jews. Reb Yosef Leib already began studying under Reb Leizer at the age of 15, in Kelm and married Reb Leizer's daughter at the age of 21. Reb Yosef Leib initiated many innovations. In 1894, he attempted to introduce Mussar to the yeshiva's curriculum, and in 1897 he brought Rabbi Yehuda Leib Chasman zt"l to serve as the yeshiva's Mashgiach. [Hamodia 2005: 7 Cheshvan 1929].

Rav Shimon Shkop of Grodno (1860-1939). Born in Turz, Poland, Rav Shimon studied in Mir at the age of 12, and then Volozhin at the age of 15, with Rabbi Chaim Soloveitchik. He was brought to Telshe in 1885 by his uncle, Rav Lazer Gordon. Rav Shimon’s brother-in-law, Rav Shlomo Zalman Abel, was one of the three founders of the Telshe Yeshiva. He taught at Telshe for 18 years. He succeeded Rav Alter Shmuelevicz as Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshiva Shaarei Torah in Grodno, from 1920 to 1939, transforming it into one of the finest yeshivos in Poland and beyond. In 1929, Rav Shimon Shkop came to America to raise funds for the yeshiva, and accepted R' Dov (Bernard) Revel's invitation to serve as rosh yeshiva of Yeshiva Rabbeinu Yitzchak Elchanan in New York. However, at the request of the Chafetz Chaim, Rav Shkop returned to Europe after six months. In 1939, the Soviet Red army marched into Grodno during the Asseres Yemei Teshuva. Most of the talmidim fled to Vilna, but Rav Shimon Shkop was too old and sick to travel and remained behind with a few talmidim. He passed away a month later. Rav Shimon Shkop was the author of Shaarei Yosher.

Rav Yehuda Horowitz, the Stutchiner Rebbe (1981).

Rav Dovid Laniado of Aram Soba (Aleppo, Syria), author of LeKodshim Asher Ba’Aretz

10 Cheshvan

Gad ben Yaakov Avinu (1566 BCE-1441 BCE)

Rav Yechiel Michel of Krakow, author of Seder Gittin (1660)

Rav Aryeh Leib of Stanislov, author of Nachlas Aryeh (1749). The city of Stanisławów was founded in the year 1654 by the Hetman (commander) and Starosta (County Administrator) of the Halicz region, Jedrzej Potocki, and was named after his son Stanisław. Armenians and Jews were invited and promised, in the founding charter of the city of May 7, 1654, the right to settle in the city and the right to establish a house of prayer on the land that was given to them. In a special charter from September 17, 1662[6], Jedrzej Potocki granted the Jews (Żydzi talmudowi) the right to settle permanently in the city and the right to engage in commerce and crafts in the same measure as “the members of the Polish, Ruthenia and Armenian nations.” In 1732, the Jewish population was 1,470 souls from among a total population of 3,321

Rav Meir, Rav of Lelov and of Ostroha, author of Meir Nesivim (1789).

Rav Avraham Oppenheim, author of Eishel Avraham on Shulchan Aruch (1826). [Not to be confused with Rav Avraham Dovid Wahrman of Butchatch, author of a sefer with the same name – see 30 Tishrei.]

Rav Yosef Meir, Rav of Golina (1831).

Rav Yitzchak Schick of Karlin, the Keren Ora (1851)

Rav Meir Shapit of Kobrin, author of Nir Liyerushalmi (1872).

Rav Dov Beirish Weidenfeld, the Tchebiner Rav (1881-1965). His maternal grandfather was the seventh link in an unbroken chain of poskim beginning with the Shach. Beirishel's paternal grandfather was a disciple of R' Yaakov Loeberbaum, author of Nesivos HaMishpat. His father, Rav Yaakov Weidenfeld, founder of the Kochar MiYaakov Yeshiva, was his primary teacher until he was nifter in 1894, just two weeks prior to Reb Beirishel’s Bar Mitzvah. Thereafter, he became a student of his two older brothers, Rav Yitzchak of Horimlov (where Beirishel was also born) and Rav Nachum of Dombrova. At the age of 19, Rav Beirish married Rebbetzin Yachat, the daughter of Rav Yisrael Yosef Kluger of Tchebin. At the age of 24, he received semicha from Rav Yitzchak Shmelkish, the Beis Yitzchak. His wife administered a modest coal business to support him. In 1923, after 20 years of learning, he assumed the title of the Tchebiner Rav. Along with his wife and youngest daughter, the Rav was deported to Sverdelovsk, Siberia, in late 1940. With the dissolution of the labor camp, the Rav escaped to Buchara. The Tshebiner Rav arrived on the eve of Pesach, 1946, in Jerusalem, which he was to call home for the rest of his life, settling in the Shaarei Chessed neighborhood. His response were collected in the sefer Doveiv Meisharim. His son-in-law and successor as Rosh Yeshivah of Kochav MiYaakov was Rav Baruch Shimon Schneersohn.

11 Cheshvan

Metushelach ben Chanoch, grandfather of Noach (3074 BCE – 2105 BCE)

Rachel Imeinu (1554 BCE) [Hamodia says 1952 BCE] (according to the Vilna Gaon, she was 36 years old; according to Sefer Hayashar, 45)

Binyamin ben Yaakov Avinu (1554-1445 BCE) [Hamodia says 1843 BCE]

Rav Menachem Nachum Twersky, the Chernobyl Rebbe (1730-1797), a student of the Baal Shem Tov and the Magid Mezritch. He authored Meor Einayim. He was succeeded by his son, Mordechai, founder of the Chernobyl dynasty, the descendents of which are the Skverer Chasidim, the current Rebbe of whom is Rav Dovid Twersky of New Square, NY.

Rav Pesach Pruskin, Rav and Rosh Yeshivah in Kobrin (1879-1939). Born to his widowed mother (he was named after his father, who died several months prior to his birth), in abject poverty. She took her five children to the home of her grandfather, Rabbi Pinchas Michael, who was Rav in Antipole. In his teens, he joined the yeshivah of the Chofetz Chaim in Radin He later went to Slobodka, where he was inspired by the Mussar of "der Alter," Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel.and spent a year at Kelm with Rabbi Simcha Zissel Ziv The Alter of Slobodka, constantly searching for suitable cities in which to establish yeshivos, selected Slutsk, a large city in White Russia, for his next undertaking. He dispatched Rabbi Isser Zalman Meltzer as Rosh Yeshivah, with fourteen talmidim - among them Pesach Kobriner. He became mashgiach in Slutsk, than – in 1911 – Rav of Amtsislav (also called Mistsislav); there he opened a yeshiva. When the Bolsheviks took over Russia, and his native city of Kobrin was incorporated into Poland (by the Soviet-Polish treaty of Riga, 1922), he escaped the Communist rule to Kobrin. Where he became Rav and opened another yeshiva.

Rav Avraham Elimelech Weinberg, founder of Slonimer Chassidus (1804-1883), a disciple of Rav Noach of Lechovitz, and author of Be'er Avraham on Mechilta, Yesod Ha'avodah, and Chessed L’Avraham. He was was active in the spread of the Chasidic movement in Lithuania and was a main organizer of support for the religious communities in the Holy Land.

Rav Yehuda Leib Chasman, mashgiach of Yeshivas Chevron (1869-1935). Learned in Kelm under Rabbi Simcha Zissel Ziev, in Volozhin under the Netziv as well as that of the Rabbi Chaim Halevi Soloveichik of Brisk. In 1897, he was brought to serve as the Telz yeshiva's Mashgiach. He established the independent Yeshiva in Shtutshin in 1908. In 1912, he was rabbi of Shtutsin. In his last years, he was the spiritual director of the Slabodka Yeshiva in Hebron and in Jerusalem. In 1926, he became mashgiach at Chevron. Author of Ohr Yohel. Among his talmidin was Rav Shlomo Schwadron.

12 Cheshvan

Rav Yehuda Tzadka, rosh yeshiva of Porat Yosef (1909-1991). Born in Yerushalayim, Rav Yehuda was a great-great grandson of Rav Tzadka Chutzin, author of Tzedaka U’misphat. His mother, Simcha, was the Ben Ish Chai’s niece. The Tzadka family lived in the Beis Yisrael neighborhood of Yerushalayim. When he was 12 years old, Yehuda Tzadka enrolled in the Porat Yosef Yeshiva in the Old City. There, he became very close to Rav Ezra Attia. At the age of only 27 years, he was appointed to teach at the yeshiva. Among Reb Yehuda’s first students was Rav Ovadia Yosef. In time, Rav Yehuda became the menahel ruchani, and with the petira of Rav Ezra Attias in 1970, he was appointed to new Rosh Yeshiva.

Rav Nachum of Shadik, Yerushalayim

Rav Moshe Kramer, Av Beis Din in Vilna. His surname, “Kramer” is derived from the Yiddish word for storekeeper. He owned a store, which his wife ran. And as a result, he always insisted on no being paid for his rabanus (1648)

13 Cheshvan

Rav Yehuda Hachassid, author of Sefer Hachassidim

Rav Tzvi Shraga Grossbard (1916-1993) was born in Visan, Lithuania. His father, Rav Aharon Zev, was an outstanding talmid of the Chafetz Chaim. When Tzvi Shraga was still a youngster, his father was brutally beaten to death by Lithuanian thugs because he refused to inform on a fellow Jew. At the age of nine Tzvi Shraga joined Yeshivas Sha'arei Torah in Grodna. At age 14, Rav Tzvi Shraga entered Grodna's yeshiva gedola and formed a close bond with the famed Rav Shimon Shkop. Afterwards, he became one of Rav Baruch Ber Lebowitz's select students in Yeshivas Kaminetz, and at the beginning of the Second World War he studied for a year and a half under Rav Daniel Movshovitz in Yeshivas Kelm. In 1941, Rav Tzvi Shraga left Europe for Eretz Yisrael. There, he joined the Lomza yeshiva in Petach Tikvah headed by his uncle, Rav Abba Grossbard. Rav Tzvi Shraga also became the head of Tel Aviv's beis mussar and developed a strong friendship with mussar giant, Rav Eliyahu Dessler who was then spiritual mashgiach of the Ponovezh Yeshiva. The two men studied b'chavrusa each week in Rav Tzvi Shraga's home. In 1967 Rav Tzvi Shraga Grossbard became the director of Chinuch Atzmai and he remained at its helm for 25 years,

Rav Baruch of Kosov (1782). Disciple of the Maggid of Mezritch and of Rav Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk; author of Yesod HaEmunah and Amud HaAvoda.

Rav Haim Nahum Effendi (1872-1960). Served as Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Egypt (1925-1960). He was witness both to a vibrant community of 80,000 Jews living in Egypt and also to the community's disintegration after 1948 when government hostility, violence, economic restrictions, confiscation and deportation caused most Jews to leave. Born near Izmir in Turkey, he was sent by his parents to learn in a yeshiva in Tiveriya and later went to a French Lycee for his secondary education, obtaining a degree in Muslim law in Constantinople. He also attended the Sorbonne's School of Oriental Languages, where he perfected his linguistic abilities and also studied history and philosophy. In 1923, Rabbi Nahum received an invitation from Moise Cattaoui Pacha, head of the Jewish community in Cairo, to become the Chief Rabbi of Egypt and was appointed to serve as a Senator in the nation's Legislative Assembly.

14 Cheshvan

Rav Yehuda Lowy, grandfather of the Maharal (1539)

Rav Leib Baal HaYisurim in Tzefas (1836) [Hamodia 2005 says 15 Cheshvan]

Rav Avraham Elimelech Perlow of Stolin-Karlin (1891-1942). Born to Rav Yisrael “the Yenuka” of Stolin, Reb Avraham Elimelech married in 1912. He succeeded his father as Rebbe in 1922; most of his father’s Chasidim followed him as he settled in Karlin, while his brother, Rav Dovid of Zlatipol led a flock to Stolin. In 1929, Rav Avraham Elimelech founded a yeshiva in Luninetz. He, his Rebetzin, and his two sons were murdered by local Ukranian peasants. His actual yahrtzeit is not known. This day has been chosen as his Yom Hazikaron. A collection of his chidushei Torah have been recorded as “Kuntres Pri Elimelech” and printed in Yalkut Divrei Aharon and in Birchas Aharon.

15 Cheshvan

Mattisyahu ben Yochanan, Kohen Godol, father of the Chasmonaim (138 BCE, or 165)

Rav Eliezer ben Yitzchak ibn Archa (1651). Born in Tzefas, he moved to Chevron, where he served as Rav of the small Jewish population for most of his life. According to the Chida, he wrote many works including a commentary on Ein Yaakov and on Midrash Rabbah.

Rav Tzvi Horowitz of Tchortkov, father of Reb Shmelke of Nikolsburg and the Baal Haflaa (1753)

Rav Shmuel Frenkel of Dorag, the Imrei Shefer (1881) [Hamodia 2005 says 1921]

Rav Chaim Pinto the Second was born in Mogador (current Essaouira), Morocco (-1939). His grandfather, Rav Chaim the First, was the great-grandson of Rav Yosef Pinto, who fled from Spain to Rome with 26 talmidim after the 1492 expulsion. However, he had to flee to Damascus after local priests trapped him into a theological debate and soundly lost. When the Jewish population of Mogador began thinning out, Rav Chaim the Second moved to Casablanca, while his son, Rav Moshe Aharon Pinto, stayed Mogador to prevent his father’s shul from closing down.

Rav Avraham Yeshaya Karelitz, the Chazon Ish (1878-1953). Educated by his father, the Av Beis Din in Kosova, Poland (near Grodno)), his first work on several parts of the Shulchan Aruch was published anonymously in Vilna in 1911 under the title "Chazon Ish," by which name he became known. He moved to Vilna about 1920 and moved to Eretz Yisrael in 1933, settling in Bnei B'rak. Upon his arrival in Eretz Yisrael, he devoted vast amounts of time and energy to Seder Zeraim, which deals mainly with laws pertaining to the land, to answer the many halachic problems inherent to a life in the Holy Land consistent with Torah.

16 Cheshvan

Rav Elazar Menachem Mann Shach (1894?-2001). Born in Vaboilnick, Lithuania, and left for Ponevezh (38km away) at age 7. Learned at Slabodka under Rav Yechezkel Bernstein (Divrei Yechezkel), then under the Alter (Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkel, and developed a close relationship with Rav Isser Zalman Meltzer, whose niece Rav Shach eventually married. In 1927, he served as Rosh Mesivta at Kletzk under Rav Aharon Kotler, holding the same position at Novardok from 1932-34. In 1951, he started his career as Rosh Yeshiva at Ponevezh under Rav Yosef Kahanemen.

Rav (Reb) Shlomo Carlebach (1925-1994), the foremost Jewish songwriter in the 2nd half of the 20th century, who used his music to inspire Jews around the world. Over his 69 years, he lived in Manhattan, San Francisco, Toronto and Moshav Or Modiin, Israel. In a recording career that stretched over 30 years, Reb Shlomo sang his songs on more than 25 albums. Shlomo Carlebach was born in Berlin, where his father, Naftali, was an Orthodox leader. The family, which fled the Nazis in 1933, lived in Switzerland before coming to New York in 1939. His father became the rabbi of a small synagogue on West 79th Street, Congregation Kehlilath Jacob; Shlomo Carlebach and his twin brother, Eli Chaim, took over the synagogue after their father's death in 1967. He studied at the Yeshiva Torah Vodaath in Brooklyn and at the Bais Medrash Gavoah in Lakewood, N.J. From 1951 to 1954, he worked as a traveling emissary of the Grand Rabbi of Lubavitch, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson. His singing career began in Greenwich Village, where he met Bob Dylan and other folk singers, and moved to Berkeley for the 1966 Folk Festival. After his appearance, he decided to remain in the Bay Area to reach out to what he called "lost Jewish souls," runaways and drug addicted youths.

17 Cheshvan

Rav Menachem Mendel Hager of Kosov (1768-1825), founder of the Vizhnitz and Kosov dynasties and author of Ahavas Shalom. The son of Rav Yaakov Koppel Chassid, Rav Menachem Mendel was a student of Rav Moshe Leib of Sassov, Rav Tzvi Hirsch of Nadvorna, and Rav Ze’ev Wolfe of Tcharne-Ostra. His grandson was Rav Menachem Mendel of Vizhnitz.

Rav Reuven Katz, rav of Petach Tikva and author of Degel Reuven. His son, Rav Leizer Katz, was a rav in Passaic, New Jersey, for many years until his petira in 2001.

Rav Meshulam Zushe Twersky, the Chernobyler Rebbe of Bnei Brak (1917-1987). An eighth generation direct descendent of the Rav Menachem Nachum of Chernobyl, Rav Meshulam Zushe was born in Mozyr, Belarus. He lived and learned with his maternal grandfather, the Admor of Tchetchov, Rav Yeshaya Halberstam, the youngest son of the Divrei Chaim. In 1959, he moved his court to Bnai Brak. He was succeeded by his son, Rav Menachem Nachum.

Rav Tzvi Pruzansky (2005). He helped found the Toronto Kollel, and established, along with his friend, Rav Dovid Hersh Mayer zt"l, Yeshivas Beis Binyomin in Stamford, which was named after Rav Tzvi's father and funded by Rav Tzvi's brothers, ybl"c, Reb Yosef and Reb Moshe.

18 Cheshvan

Rav Yisrael Odesser, leader of Breslaver Chassidim

Rav Yishayah Bardaky (1862). R' Bardaky was born in Pinsk and taught Torah there, but he decided to settle in Eretz Yisrael after his first wife died. When the ship carrying R' Bardaky, his son, Shmuel Akiva, and his daughter, neared the port of Akko, it was wrecked, and all the passengers were thrown into the sea. R' Bardaky, however, was a powerful swimmer, and, with his two children on his back, he swam ashore. Upon reaching Yerushalayim, R' Bardaky was appointed head of the Ashkenazic community. He also was appointed vice-consul of the Austrian Empire.

Rav Yaakov Friedman of Bohush-Husyatin (1956)

Rav Raphael Baruch Toledano of Morocco, author of Sephardic Kitzur Shulchan Aruch (1970)

Rav Nachum Pertzovitz (Partzovitz), Rosh Yeshivas Mir Yerushalayim (1986). At the age of 9, he attended Ramailles Yeshiva in Vilna, and became close to its rosh yeshiva, Rav Shlomo Heiman.

Rav Meir Kahane, assassinated November 5, on a visit to New York City (1932-1990). Born in Brooklyn, NY, to Rabbi Charles Kahane, who was involved in the Revisionist Zionist movement, and was a close friend of Zev (Vladimir) Jabotinsky. Meir was active in Betar, the militant revisionist youth movement. Kahane received a degree in International Law from New York University, and ordination from the Mir Yeshiva in Brooklyn. He edited the Jewish Press, and served as a pulpit rabbi and teacher in New York until the mid-1960s. His life's work, however, started in 1968, when he founded the Jewish Defense League (JDL), setting out to change the image of the Jew from "weak and vulnerable" to one of a "mighty fighter, who strikes back fiercely against tyrants." Kahane and his family moved to Israel in 1971, where he founded the militantly anti-Arab Kach party. His son, Binyamin Zev Kahane was murdered by Arab extremists in 2001, as he traveled with his family in the West Bank.

Rav Nechemiah Kibel (1952-2005). Born in Memphis, Tennessee, to Holocaust survivors, R’ Kibel entered the newly founded Yeshiva of the South, under Rav Meir Belsky, who was one of the first talmidim of Rav Yitzchak Hutner. He served as a magid shiur at the yeshiva in Memphis, then founded and taught at RITSS (Regional Institute for Torah and Secular Studies), Cincinnati’s Bais Yaakov in 1989. A few later, he played a major role in the founding of Cincinnati’s Community Kollel.

19 Cheshvan

Rav Naftali Yitzchak Segal, author of Naftali Seva Ratzon (1555)

Rav Yitzchak Avraham Wallerstein of Minsk, brother of the Shaagas Aryeh (1775)

Rav Shimshon Halevi Heller of Zhbarizh (1839)

Rav Eliyahu Rogler, Rav of Slobodka and Kalisch (1849)

Rav Moshe Michel of Biala (1854), born to Rav Eliezer Fishel of Strizhov, a mekubal. After his marriage, Rav Moshe Michel settled in Zamoszh, where he and his wife were supported by her father. After the passing of his father in 1812, he became a chassid of the Chozeh of Lublin, and then Rav Bunim of Peshischa. He eventually became Rav of Biala.

Rav Yehoshua Attiah

Rav Sa’asa Hakohen of Djerba, Tunisia (1904)

Rav Avraham Tzvi Hirsch Kamai, the last Rav of Mir (1859-1942). Born in the Lithuanian town of Shkod, his family traced its ancestry back to the brother of the Vilna Gaon, Rav Avraham, author of Maalos Hatorah.His father was Rav Eliyahu Baruch Kamai, who served as Rav of of the communities of Shkod, Karelitz and Czechnovtza, following which he served as rov of Mir and as head of the town's yeshiva. His chiddushim were published in Bris Melach. Rav Tzvi Hirsch’s wife, who was a clever and highly-educated woman, opened a pharmacy in order to support the family. Rav Tzvi Hirsch assisted her from time to time when she needed help, and he would also prepare medicines for the customers according to the prescriptions that they brought. With his father’s petira, however, he replaced as Rav and Rosh Yeshiva in Mir.

Rav Pinchas Epstein, Rosh Av Beis Din of the Eida Hachareidis [see also 17 Teves]

20 Cheshvan

Rav Avraham ben Yitzchak of Narbonne, author of Sefer HaEshkol, father-in-law of the the Raavad, Rav Avraham ben Dovid.

Rav Avraham ben Dovid (Ravad II) (1119-1198). R' Avraham lived at the time of Rabbeinu Tam and is mentioned a few times in the Tosafos. He had the merit of having Eliyahu HaNavi appear to him, as claimed by Rabbi Chaim Vital in his introduction to Etz HaChaim. His son was the tzaddik Rabbi Yitzchak Sagi Nahor. According to Yated 2005, author of Sefer HaEshkol

Rav Shalom of Kaminka (1851)

Birth of Rav Avraham Yaakov of Sadigura (1820-1883), son of Rav Yisrael of Ruzhin

Rav Yechezkel, the third Rebbe of Radmosk, known as the Kenesses Yechezkel of Radomsk (1864-1910)

Rav Moshe Lemberger, the Makava Rav of Kfar Ata (1982)

Rav Mordechai Sharabi (1912-1984). Born in Taiz, Yemen to Rav Yehuda and Miriam Taizi, his father was niftar before he was born, and his mother passed away just 4 years later. He was raised by his grandfather, Rav Yefes Avraham, Rav in Sharab. Rav Mordechai’s other grandfather was Rav Salom Sharabi, the Rashash. In 1931, shortly after he married, Rav Mordechai moved to Eretz Yisrael and settled in Yerushalayim. He later founded Yeshivat Nahar Shalom in the Machane Yehuda section of the city. Although they never had children, tens of boys of the neighborhood had their meals with them and grew to become Roshei Yeshiva and Roshei Kollel. It is related that in the week of Rav Mordechai’s petira, the Baba Sali experienced a frightening premonition that much Jewish blood would be spilled, including children. He davened the entire day and fasted despite being over 90 years of age. The next morning, he announced that the gezeira was lifted, and that one of the tzadikim gave his life away for the generation. At the time, the Baba Sali was not aware that Rav Mordechai was ill. Indeed, the tzadik was niftar that week.

Rav Mordechai Leib Zuckerman, author of Meir Einei Yisrael (1912-2003). Born in Samagron, a city near Vilna. In 1931, he moved to Radin to learn with the Chafetz Chaim. After the petirah of the Chafetz Chaim, Rav Mordechai Leib stayed in Radin for eight more years. During the war, he arrived in the Kovna ghetto, where he acted as shamash for Rav Avraham Grodzinsky, the mashgiach of Slabodka. As Rav Avraham's talmid muvhak, he transcribed his mentor's discourses and studied with him privately bechavrusa when Rav Avraham was hospitalized. Subsequently, the Nazis burned down that hospital and Rav Mordechai Leib was the last person to have seen Rav Avraham alive. When the Nazis decided to liquidate the entire ghetto, Rav Mordechai Leib was saved by a miracle when he hid in a pit with a few others. In 1948, he moved to Yerushalayim. When he settled in Givat Shaul, he accepted the positions of rav of the Perushim shul and the head of Kollel Chevron there. He occupied those positions for over 50 years.

21 Cheshvan

Rav Dovid ben Zimra, the Radbaz (1480-1573). Arriving in Tzefas as a child after the Spanish expulsion, he emigrated to Egypt in 1514. Shortly thereafter, he was recognized as chief rabbi of Egypt, a post he held for 40 years. His income, however, came through business, from which he became quite wealthy. Among his talmidim in Cairo were Rav Yitzchak Luiria (the Ari) and Rav Betazelel Azhkenazi, the Shita Mekubetzes. In 1553, he returned to Eretz Yisrael, settling in Tzefas.

Rav Avraham Azulai, author of Chessed L’Avraham (1569-1643), which is often quoted in the writings of the Ari HaKodesh. Rav Avraham was the great, great-grandfather of the Chida. Born in Fez, Morocco, he eventually moved to Chevron in 1609 and became the holy city’s Chief Rabbi. [according to some, his yahrtzeit is 24 Cheshvan]

Rav Yichya Halevi Alshich, head of Yemenite community

Rav Dovid Shlomo Eibshitz of Soroka (1755-1813), author of Levushei Serad (on halacha) and Arvei Nachal (a Torah commentary with Chasidic philosophy). In 1809, he settled in Tzefat, Israel, where he died and is buried.

Rav Yissacher Ber of Podheitz, son of the Pnei Yehoshua (1844)

Rav Elazar HaKohen of Poltusk (1881)

Rav Moshe of Shitchelnik (1912)

Rav Betzalel Stern, author of Teshuvos B’Tzel Hachochma, and brother of Rav Moshe Stern (1988)

22 Cheshvan

Rav Yissachar Dov Rokeach, the third Belzer rebbe (1854-1926)

Rav Moshe Lima, author of Chelkas Mechokek. Early in the 17th century, he was hired by the city of Slonim to be its first Rav. While there, he was considered the highest authority in halacha in all of Lithuania. He later served as Rav in Brisk and Vilna.

Rav Ezriel Halevi Horowitz, the "Eizener Kop" of Lublin. Opposed the Chozeh when the latter arrived in Lublin.

Harav Uriel Dovidi (2005). The 14th of 14 children, 9 of whom died in childhood (while 3 others died in early adulthood). His mother, Serach, “demanded” a healthy son, talmid chacham. Rav Uriel had a photographic memory and great analytic ability, despite having had only four years of structured schooling. He lived with and learned from shieks, which helped later during the Iranian revolution. Rav Uriel lost his father at 17, and married his first cousin at 18. He became an expert in Tanach & Midrash, and wrote a Hebrew-Persian dictionary. He became a mohel, a shochet, then became a teacher. He had a large library and owned one of only three sets of Shas in Iran. Rav Uriel moved to Tehran and became one of the two main rabbis of the city. He was personally responsible for keeping shops closed on Shabbos and provided kosher food for Jews in army. When he escaped Iran in 1994, two thousand sefarim had to be left behind; only his Torah Temima was taken to Israel.

23 Cheshvan

Rav Aharon Katzenellenbogen of Brisk, author of Minchas Aharon (1854)

Rav Moshe Midner (Minder) of Slonim-Baranowitz, a grandson of the Yesod Ha'avodah and a talmid of Rav Chaim Brisker Soloveitchik. He was mashgiach of Yeshivas Toras Chessed. The chsaidim of Slonim used to say of him ““From Moses of Midian up until Moses Midner, there was none like Moses.”

Rav Yehosef Rottenberg of Kosson (1912)

24 Cheshvan

Binyamin ben Yaakov Avinu, buried near Kfar Saba

Rav Avraham Azulai (1670-1744). Born in Fez to Rav Mordechai Azulai. In 1700, he fulfilled his life’s dream and boarded a ship for Eretz Yisrael. The only possessions he took him were the many manuscripts of his chiddushim. These were all lost at sea during a storm. In Chevron, Rav Avraham wrote his major work on Kabbalah, entitled Kiryat Arba. It is based on the teachings of the four great kabbalists: the Ramak, the Arizal, Rav Chaim Vital and Rav Avraham Galanti. Later, in Aza (Gaza), Rav Avraham composed three more sefarim: Baalei Bris Avraham, a commentary on the twenty-four books of the Tanach, and Chessed l'Avraham, which contains kabbalistic drashos. In addition to this, he wrote Kanaf Renanim, a summary of the kavanos of the prayers according to the Arizal; Ma'aseh Chosheiv, a summary of the kavanos of the Arizal on the mitzvos; Ahavah BaTa'anugim on the Mishnah, and Hagahos l'Sefer HaLevush on the Shulchan Aruch. His great grandson was Rav Chaim Yosef Dovid Azulai, the Chida. [According to Hamodia 2006, he was born ~1570 and was niftar on this date in 1643, and his grandfather, Rav Avraham Azulai Hazaken settled in Fez after being expelled from Castille, Spain, in 1492.]

Rav Gedaliah of Zalkaa (1763).

Rav Raphael Kohen of Hamburg (1722-1803). Rosh yeshiva in Minsk at the age of 19, Rav Raphael became Rav of Pinsk in 1763. In 1776, he became Rav of the joint community of Altoona, Hamburg, and Wandsbek (AHU). He is the author of Toras Yekusiel.

Rav Chaim Yosef Brukstein of Pistin (1864).

Rav Dovid Twersky of Makarov (1902). Makarov is located in Kievskaya, 28 km from Kiev. The earliest known Jewish community was 1765. 1897 Hasidic population (census) was 3953. The Twersky Chasidic dynasty began in Makarov with a Nachum Twersky (1805-1851). Decimated in the Holocaust, Makarov is an offshoot of the Chernobyl dynasty.

Rav Hillel Moshe Meshel Gelbstein (1834-1904 or 1907), born in Bialystok, his mother was a 12th generation descendent of the Shlah HaKodesh. At the age of 15, he traveled to Kotzk and became of chassid of Rebbe. After the Kotzker passed away, Rav Meshel adopted the Chidushei HaRim as his rebbe. On the 23rd of Adar of 1867, the Chidushei HaRim was nifter, and on the 13th of Nissan that same year, the Tzemach Tzedek was niftar. Considering himself orphaned, Rav Meshel moved to Eretz Yisrael and settled in Yerushalayim – he would never again sleep outside the walls of the city. His sefarims included Mishkenos Le’abir Yaakov, Ohr Leyesharim, and Ohr Zarua Latzadik.

Rav Raphael Dovid Auerbach, Rosh Yeshiva of Shaar Shomayim (1869-1945)

Rav Gedalya Moshe Goldman of Zvhil (1888-1949), son of Rav Shlomo (Reb Shlomke) of Zhvil. When the Soviets rose to power, he was sent to Siberia and after eight years of exile managed, in 1936, to flee to Eretz Yisrael, where he also concealed his greatness. He served as an Admor for only five years, for he died when he was only 61.

Rav Nachum Dov HaKohen Kreisman (1923-2004). Born in the town of Rakishok in Lithuania's Ponovezh District from a famous line of rabbonim who served in the Rakishok rabbinate for nine consecutive generations, ending with HaRav Betzalel Yalovetzky. As a bochur he went to Yeshivas Telz, where he studied under Rav Eliyahu Meir Bloch. He settled in Baltimore and enrolled at Ner Yisrael, where he studied under Rav Yaakov Yitzchak Ruderman. When Rav Aharon Kotler came to Baltimore, Rav Ruderman sent two bochurim to the train station to meet him: Nachum Dov and Shmuel Kamenetsky. Noting the high caliber of the two young men Rav Kotler took them back with him to New York in preparation for starting Yeshivas Lakewood. In 1954, Rav Kreisman moved to Eretz Yisrael and married, and in 1967, he was chosen to serve as a dayan by Rav Yosef Shalom Eliashiv, Rav Betzalel Zolti, the Rav of Yerushalayim, and Rav Shlomo Shimshon Karelitz.

25 Cheshvan

Rav Avraham, brother of the Vilna Gaon, author of Maalos Hatorah (1807)

Rav Mordechai Rokeach, Rav of Bilgoria (Bilgoraya) (1949). The 4th Admor of Belz, after Rav Yissacher Ber Rokeach and before Rav Yissacher Ber Rokeach.

Rav Elya Yurkanski (1908-2005). Born in Minsk, he and two brothers were smuggled over the order to Poland, on a recommendation by the Chafetz Chaim; Reb Elya was not yet a Bar Mitzvah, and he would never again see his parents. He spent almost 10 years in Baranovich with Rav Elchonon Wasserman before leaving for Mir in 1929. He traveled with the yeshiva to Shanghai and eventually join the yeshiva in New York, where he remained his entire life. He was a Rosh Yeshiva with Mir for over 55 years.

26 Cheshvan

Rav Shlomo Segal, Av Beis Din Polna’ah and Lvov, he authored MiBeis Levi (1638) [Hamodia 2007 lists Rav Shlomo Charif, Rav of Lvov, 1637]

Rav Raphael Hoken of Hamburg (1723-1803). Born in Liphland to Rav Yekusiel Ziskind, the Rav of the town, Reb Raphael was taken to learn with the Shaagas Aryeh, a relative of theirs, in Minsk, at the age of 12. At the age of 19, Rav Raphael replaced his rebbi as Rosh Yeshiva in Minsk. Four years later, he was chosen as Rav of Rakow, and later of Smilowitz. In 1763, he became Rav in Pinsk. There he wrote Toras Yekusiel on Yoreh Deah, with an appendix of halachos pertaining to agunos. Leter he became Rav in Posen, and in 1776 of the three kehillos of Atuna, Hamburg, and Wandsbeck (AH”U). He also authored Sheilos Hakohanim Torah on the avodah of the kohanim, Sh’Ut Veshav Hakohen, Mapei Lahon on the issur of lashon harah, and Daas Kedoshim.

Rav Simcha Soloveitchik, son of the Bais Halevi (1941)

Rav Aryeh Mordechai Halberstam of Shinova (1930)

Rav Elya Juransky, Rosh Yeshiva in Mir, Brooklyn (2005)

Rav Mordechai Zimmerman, renown mohel (1913-2005). Born in New York to Rav Yosef Yehoshua and Shaina Rochel Zimmerman, he attended Torah Vodaas, which his father help found. He and his two brothers were sent to Mir and Grodna in Europe. While in Europe, he met with the Chafetz Chaim. He received his ksav semicha from Rav Shimon Shkop. After his marriage, he settled in Dubuque, Iowa for 5 years, then settled in the Bronx. In the mid-1980s, he moved to Boro Park, where he became a prominent member of the Mirrer minyon. He is survived by 2 sons, a daughter, and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

27 Cheshvan

Rav Yaakov Leizer, the Pshevorsker Rebbe, also known as RebYankele of Antwerp (1907-1999). Born in Galicia, he became a follower of the Koloshitzer Rebbe, Rav Chuna Halberstam, in 1926. He and his family were shipped to Siberia until the end of WW2. After the war, he traveled to America, Paris, and Antwerp.

28 Cheshvan

Rabbeinu Yonah (ben Avraham) of Gerondi, France (1200 [1180]-1263). The Ramban's mother and Rabbeinu Yonah’s father were siblings. Many years later, the Ramban’s son, Rav Shlomo, married the daughter of Rabbeinu Yonah. Thus, the two great rishonim were mechutanim as well as first cousins. He was a student of Rav Shlomo ben Avraham Min Ha'Har. When King Louis XIV of France, "Saint" Louis,” burnt all the copies of the Talmud in Paris in the Square of the Louvre, Rabbeinu Yonah, one of the Rambam’s main detractors, felt that the events in Paris were a sign that he and the other opponents of the Rambam were seriously wrong. He then composed his work Shaarei Teshuvah, in which he outlined the methods of doing Teshuvah, and he traveled from place to place preaching about the need to back away from matters which cause division among the Jewish People. Among his talmidim are the Rashba and Ra’ah. [Others cite his yahrtzeit as 1, 8, or 11 Cheshvan]

Rav Zev Wold, Rav of Salik, author of Nachlas Binyomin (1686).

Rav Eliezer Lieber of Berditchev (1770)

Rav Shalom Eisen. Moreh Tzedek in the Beis Din of the Aida Hachareidis in Yerushalayim for over 50 years, he was a talmid of Rav Isser Zalmen Meltzer.

29 Cheshvan

Rav Yitzchak Eizik Chover, author of Responsa Binyan Olam and Si’ach Yitzchak. One of his talmidim, HaRav Yitzchak Kahane, wrote Toldos Yitzchak (1852)

Rav Avraham Abish Kanner, the Tchechover Rebbe of Haifa (1983)

30 Cheshvan

Rav Tzvi Hersh Hakohen of Rimanov (1778-1846). From the age of fifteen, Tzvi Hersh began traveling to the court of Rav Menachem Mendel of Rimanov. He became one of the Rebbe’s closest chassisdim and his personal attendant; he tus became know as Rav Tzvi Hersh Meshares. After the petira of Rav Naftali of Ropshitz (another of the closest chassidim of Rav Menachem Mendel), Rav Tzvi Hersh returned to Rimanov to accept the mantle of leadership of the chassidim. His divrei Torah were compiled and published by his son, Rav Yosef, under then name Be’eiros Hamayim. It is comprised of several sefarim, all beginning with the word Be’er. For example, the sefer Be’er Lechai Roi, contains his drushim on Chumash and the Yomim Tovim. Other teachings of his can be found in the sefer Mevasser Tov His yahrtzeit falls on the thirtieth of Cheshvan, but since Cheshvan more often has only 29 days, it is generally commemorated on the 29th.

Rav Yaakov Betzalel Zolty, Rav of Yerushalayim

Rav Asher (Oscar) Fasman (1908-2003). Born in Chicago, he served as Rav in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Ottowa, Canada, before returning to Chicago. He developed Hebrew Theological College from an afternoon only school to a full-time yeshiva, bringing gedolei Torah as Roshei Yeshiva. He was president of the yeshiva from 1946 to 1964, and also served as president of the Chicago Rabbinical Council and rav of Congregation Yehuda Moshe in Lincolnwood, Illinois. His son, Rav Chaim Fasman, is Rosh Kollel in Los Angeles.

Rav Eliezer Yehudah Waldenberg (1914- 2006). He was born in Yerushalayim to Rav Yaakov Gedalyahu who came to Eretz Yisrael from Kovno in the early 1900s. He learned in the Eitz Chaim Yeshiva and developed a very warm bond with Rav Isser Zalman Meltzer. Rav Waldenberg wrote his first sefer, Dvar Eliezer, when he was only 19. Upon the passing of his mother and later his father both in the 1960s, he published two separate sefarim on the halachos of mourning. Rav Waldenberg got involved with medical ethics during the period that he served as rabbi of a shul adjacent to the old location of Sha'arei Tzedek Hospital in downtown Yerushalayim. Among those who attended was Professor Avraham Steinberg, a pediatric neurologist and head of the Medical Ethics Center at Sha'arei Tzedek, as well as the editor of the Talmudic Encyclopedia. "Doctors who prayed at the synagogue, myself included, started asking him questions. Eventually, he began teaching a weekly medical ethics class for doctors and nurses." His teshuvos were compiled in his magnum opus, a 21-volume set of responsa entitled Tzitz Eliezer. The first volume of Tzitz Eliezer was published in 1945, when he was not yet 30. In addition, he authored a book on the laws of sea travel on Shabbat called Shvisa b'Yam, a book on mourning laws called Ein Ya'acov and a book on legal issues in the modern state called Hilchos Medina. He was also a member on the Beis Din Hagadol where he sat together for many years with Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv. Rav and Rebbetzin Waldenberg merited to have one child, a son, Rav Simcha Bunim Waldenberg. Rav Simcha Bunim became a dayan in the Eidah Hachareidis and served as its appointed Rov of the neighborhood of Ezras Torah. He himself was known as a posek muvhak. Tragically, Rav Simcha Bunim passed away about two years ago.

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