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14 Tishrei 5765 - September 29, 2004 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly









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HaRav Avrohom Halevi Horowitz, zt"l
by S. Bruchi

Thousands of Bnei Brak residents took part in the levaya on motzei Shabbos parshas Nitzovim- Vayeilech 26 Elul, of HaRav Avrohom Halevi Horowitz zt"l, a talmid of the Chazon Ish and the talmid muvhok of the Steipler, a prominent member of Kollel Chazon Ish and the author of Devar Halochoh on the halochos of yichud and Iteir Yad, who succumbed to illness at the age of 79.

HaRav Avrohom Halevi Horowitz was born in 5685 (1925) to HaRav Yisroel Halevi. At the age of eight he moved to Eretz Hakodesh with his parents, settling in Petach Tikva. By the age of 12, he was already studying at Yeshivas Lomzha in Petach Tikva and was close to HaRav Dushnitzer. At the yeshiva he studied with HaRav Yitzchok Meir Pachiner (ben Menachem), the son-in-law of HaRav Isser Zalman Meltzer, author of Even Ho'ezel. His chavrusa sent the deceased with a warm letter of recommendation to his father- in-law to accept him at Yeshivas Eitz Chaim. He transferred there at the age of 14 and studied industriously for two years until representatives of Yeshivas Beis Yosef asked him to join their yeshiva in Bnei Brak under the Steipler.

Upon his arrival at Yeshivas Beis Yosef the young Avrohom Horowitz cleaved to the rosh yeshiva. For years he learned with him bechavrusa and attended his shiurim regularly. He later recalled how once the Steipler summoned him and asked him to gather together all of the talmidim for the daily shiur which would be held in his home that day. Asked whether he was feeling ill, the Steipler explained that his one garment was torn and since the Rebbetzin had not finished mending it he would have to give the shiur at home.

R' Avrohom became renowned for his toil in Torah. He would often study by moonlight after the candle he was given every evening went out. Every evening the gabboim of the yeshiva would dispatch the talmidim to different homes for dinner, but R' Avrohom would forego dinner in exchange for a second candle.

One day the Kehillos Yaakov sent a letter to his father saying, "Due to his frail state of health he must discontinue his hasmodoh to concentrate on his health." At the beginning of the letter he wrote, "We have derived much pleasure from him for he is blessed both in his studies and comprehension and he [promises] . . . to rise up to join the ranks of gedolei Yisroel." In the letter, the Steipler also said that as his father he should ask him to stop learning outside by moonlight, "for he won't listen to me." His brothers recall that his father would turn off the light, but a short time later he would resume his learning until his father came again. Then he would take the light bulb out of the socket and send him to sleep.

During this period, he was discovered by one of chachmei Yerushalayim, who told the gaon and mekubol HaRav Yehuda Leib Auerbach about him. HaRav Yehuda Leib, and his son, spoke with R' Avrohom at length to assess his level of Torah study and found him worthy of marrying his daughter. HaRav Yehuda Leib also sent his son-in-law HaRav Simchah Bunim Lazerson to assess the 18-year-old R' Avrohom, who he found to be conversant with the entire Shas.

After marrying, HaRav Horowitz spent several years absorbed in Torah study before accepting a rabbinical post. On the advice of the Chazon Ish, he later abandoned the rabbinate and began to learn bechavrusa with the Chazon Ish, continuing for several years. He served as a ram and mashgiach at Yeshivas Tiferes Tzion, together with HaRav Michel Yehuda Lefkowitz ylct"a.

Following the petiroh of the Chazon Ish, he accepted the Steipler as his teacher. For over 30 years, he served the Kehillos Yaakov in every matter. At the Steipler's instructions, at the age of 38 he published Devar Halochoh on hilchos yichud, which received approbations by the Tchebiner Rav, HaRav Y. Abramsky, the Kehillos Yaakov and his own brother-in-law HaRav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach.

HaRav Horowitz' grandson says he spent three weeks laboring to understand a fundamental point in the writings of R' Akiva Eiger, dozing in the beis medrash but not going to bed until it became clear to him.

The Kehillos Yaakov also told HaRav Horowitz to publish Iteir Yad on how left-handed people should lay tefillin. After the petiroh of the Kehillos Yaakov he published Orchos Rabbenu, a detailed book on the practices followed by his rav muvhok, the Steipler. HaRav Shach encouraged him to publish these volumes, telling his son, HaRav Yeshayohu, to help assemble the work since it contained important lessons to be learned.

HaRav Horowitz maintained close ties with his brother-in-law, HaRav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, including extensive halachic exchanges in letters and visits.

For 40 years, he labored in Torah at Kollel Chazon Ish. He was very painstaking in fulfilling mitzvas. When he had succeeded in selecting daled minim he would kiss them fondly and would do the same with the matzos he baked. Last Pesach, he went out to buy supplies to make charoses and upon his return home said, "Boruch Hashem I was able to do it alone. Boruch Hashem another Pesach I had the merit of preparing the charoses just like the Kehillos Yaakov." For the rest of the day he wore a broad smile of simchah shel mitzvoh.

Recently his health deteriorated. He lost his eyesight and on motzei Shabbos parshas Nitzovim-Vayeilech he returned his soul, refined by yissurim, to his Maker.

The levaya set out from Kollel Chazon Ish. The participants included HaRav Aharon Leib Steinman, HaRav Michel Yehuda Lefkowitz, HaRav Chaim Kanievsky, HaRav Nissim Karelitz, HaRav Shmuel Auerbach and HaRav Meir Bergman, shlita.

Eulogies were given by HaRav Karelitz, gavad of Ramat Aharon and rosh kollel of Kollel Chazon Ish, HaRav Auerbach, the deceased's son HaRav Shlomo Zalman, and his son- in-law, HaRav Yisroel Weissfish, rov of Kiryat Menachem in Jerusalem.

HaRav Avrohom Halevi Horowitz is survived by the Rebbetzin, who stood by her late husband's side, his sons, HaRav Shlomo Zalman, HaRav Yaakov Elimelech, HaRav Simchah Bunim, HaRav Yeshayohu, his daughters, his brothers, HaRav Aryeh, HaRav Yosef and HaRav Moshe, his sisters, grandchildren and great- grandchildren, all following his path of Torah.


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