A large crowd turned out for the levaya of HaRav
Avrohom Golombeck zt"l, who served as the
mashgiach of Yeshivas Philadelphia for over 50 years.
HaRav Golombeck, who learned under the Mashgiach HaRav
Yechezkel Levenstein, was sent by HaRav Aharon Kotler to fill
the post of mashgiach at Yeshivas Philadelphia, where
he fought breaches and stood firm against the materialism
that was starting to pervade in the US at the time, passing
on the approach to learning he had received from his
rabbonim. HaRav Golombeck passed away at the age of 71
following a difficult ordeal with a severe illness.
The Mashgiach was born in 5697 (1937) in New York to HaRav
Chaim Mordechai and his mother Chashka, who took great pains
to provide him a proper Jewish education and instill in him a
Torah-true worldview. He began his yeshiva studies at
Yeshivas R' Yaakov Yosef (RJJ), which was headed by Holocaust
survivors such as the rosh yeshiva, HaRav Mendel Kravitz, and
his rabbonim, HaRav Zeidel Epstein, HaRav Nochum Abba
Grossbard and HaRav Shmuel Dovid Warshavcheck zt"l.
Upon completing his studies at the yeshiva he was chosen to
join a group of outstanding students sent to Yeshivas
Lakewood to learn under Maran HaRav Aharon Kotler
zt"l. After advancing there in both Torah and
middos he transferred to Yeshivas Ponovezh in Bnei
Brak, where he learned under the Mashgiach HaRav Yechezkel
Levenstein. During nearly a year there he used every moment
to delve into Torah and refine his learning skills. He won
the affection of the Mashgiach as well as the Rosh Yeshiva
HaRav Shach zt"l, both of whom left an indelible
impression on the young man.
Four years later he returned to Yeshivas Ponovezh for Elul
zman, revealing years later that his return was based
on an urge to draw from the spiritual wellspring the yeshiva
offered. For the next five decades he passed on to his
thousands of students and followers the approach to Torah,
emunoh and mussar he received there. Years
later he started traveling frequently to Eretz Hakodesh,
regularly visiting the Rosh Yeshiva at his home.
After returning from Ponovezh to Lakewood, HaRav Kotler sent
him with a small group of boys to Yeshivas Philadelphia to
have a positive influence on the new yeshiva students there
and eventually he was asked to serve as mashgiach
— before he had even married. The yeshiva grew over the
years, eventually becoming one of the leading yeshivas in the
Despite the severe illness he suffered in recent years HaRav
Golombeck continued giving talks and guiding students. He
accepted his suffering with love and showed staunch faith
when his son passed away four years ago.
During his last visit to Eretz Hakodesh to take part in a
family simchah he went to the Ponovezh cemetery to
pray at the grave sites of his rabbonim, asking Hashem that
he be able to continue in their path of conveying
unadulterated Torah with dedication and vigor. Summoning the
last of his reserves of strength he then gave his students a
pre-Elul talk before returning to the US.
Last Thursday he suffered a stroke and passed away on Shabbos
night, while family members and students accepted Ol
Malchus Shomayim at his bedside. On Motzei Shabbos news
of his petiroh spread quickly among his
talmidim around the world.
Thousands were on hand for the levaya at Yeshivas
Philadelphia, where he was eulogized by HaRav Shmuel
Kamenetsky and HaRav Yehuda Svei, one of the roshei
yeshiva. On Monday the aron arrived at Beis
Medrash Ponovezh in Jerusalem's Ezras Torah neighborhood.
Hespeidim were given by his long-time friends, HaRav
Moshe Zaks, dayan and moreh tzedek in
Mattersdorf, HaRav Moshe Hillel Hirsch, rosh yeshiva of
Yeshivas Slobodka, HaRav Yaakov Kriger, HaRav Yeshaya
Portnoy, a ram at Yeshivas Kol Torah, his former
talmidim, HaRav Michael Bundheimer, who now serves as
a rosh kollel in Kiryat Sefer, HaRav Yitzchok Gleisel,
rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Yagdil Torah in Jerusalem, and HaRav
Yosef Kopolowitz, mashgiach of Yeshivas Lakewood in
Jerusalem. At Har Hamenuchos Cemetery words of parting were
offered by HaRav Yaakov Kaplan.
HaRav Avrohom Golombeck zt"l is survived by sons, sons-
in-law, grandchildren and great-grandchildren following in
the path to Beis Hashem passed down throughout the