A large number of Satmar chassidim were on hand Monday evening to lay to rest Rebbitzen Pesil Layah Teitelbaum of Satmar o"h, the wife of the Satmar Rebbe, the Borech Moshe zt"l. She passed away Monday afternoon and was buried that night in the Satmar Rebbe's ohel at the cemetery in Monroe.
Her son, HaRav Zalman Leib Teitelbaum, a current Admor of Satmar, opened the eulogies, followed by her son Lipo, the rov of Beis Medrash Derech Moshe Zenta, her son-in-law, HaRav Dovid Meizlish, the rov of the Satmar kehilloh in Montreal, and her son-in-law HaRav Chaim Yehoshua Halberstam, rov of the Satmar beis medrash Vayoel Moshe in Monsey.
Following the hespeidim in Williamsburg's Kiryas Satmar, the funeral proceeded to Kiryas Yoel in Monroe, where thousands were gathered at 9:30 p.m. The enormous levaya continued until close to midnight.
The entire levaya was broadcast to Satmar centers in Jerusalem, Bnei Brak and cities around the world.
The Rebbitzen was born in 5683 (1923) to HaRav Aharon Teitelbaum, the rov of Velave, Hungary, who was among the leading rabbonim in the area, where he had widespread influence. The Admor of Satmar the Divrei Yoel later described him as a treasure trove of yiras Shomayim.
With the Nazi takeover of Europe, her father and all of her other family members were taken to Auschwitz. Before he was sent to die sanctifying the Name of Heaven, her father turned to her and said, "It looks like I won't survive. You're the youngest in the family. I hope Hashem keeps you alive. I ask that you remember what family you come from, and not make a shidduch with whoever happens to come along."
Sighet and Satmar survivors, who witnessed her mesirus nefesh to perform acts of chessed for others, recommended her as a shidduch for the rov of Sighet, the Borech Moshe, who was also a survivor. The son of the Atzei Chaim of Sighet, he had lost his wife and three children during the Holocaust.
On Adar 21, 5706 (1946) they were married in the city of Sighet. HaRav Shlomo Zalman Friedman, the rov of Rachov, one of the leading talmidim of the chosson's father, the Atzei Chaim, served as mesader kidushin.
When the Communists took over Sighet, threatening his ability to continue serving as rov, they roamed to Prague and then to the United States. The ship they sailed on laid anchor in Florida, New York just before Rosh Hashana 5707 (1947).
In Av 5739 (1979) Rav Yoel was summoned to Yeshiva Shel Ma'aloh and her husband, the rebbe's nephew, was chosen to succeed him. She stood by him as the Rebbitzen of Satmar until he passed away in Nissan 5766 (2006).
Eight years ago she became sick and in recent weeks her condition deteriorated, and she was hospitalized at Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan. Her sons and other family members stood at her bedside reciting Shema Yisroel and the customary pesukim as she returned her soul to her Maker.
Rebbitzen Pesil Layah Teitelbaum o"h is survived by her sons and sons-in-laws, as well as her grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren, including a number of rabbonim, roshei yeshivos and kehiloh leaders.