Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

21 Cheshvan 5762 - November 7, 2001 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly









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Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Hatzoloh at the Levaya of HaRav Shach, zt'l
by Betzalel Kahn

Tens of participants at the levaya were treated for the overcrowding and for dehydration. Bnei Brak residents prepared water to quench the thirst of the many mourners. All of the volunteer paramedic organizations in conjunction with Magen David Adom (MDA) made quick and very effective preparations to meet the contingencies of the levaya. The paramedics were at every possible place throughout the funeral procession of Maran Rosh Hayeshiva, ztvk'l.

Magen David Adom was at the funeral procession of hundreds of thousands of mourners with an unprecedented number of people, according to Yeruchom Mandola, MDA's spokesman. Three mobile first-aid stations were set up in Bnei Brak. As part of the planning, approximately 20 ambulances, including special emergency Cardiac Care Units, were stationed in the city, in order to be prepared for any possible need to administer first-aid treatment. In addition, dozens of Emergency Medical Technicians and paramedics were imported to Bnei Brak.

At the same time, all of MDA's stations throughout the Greater Dan and Coastal districts were placed on high alert in order to be ready for any possibility. Avi Zohar, general manager of MDA, oversaw the various squads' operations from close by.

Various volunteer paramedic groups joined forces manning stations throughout Bnei Brak. Bnei Brak's local chapter of Hatzoloh was assisted by volunteers from the Central Region. Also, hundreds of volunteers from Jerusalem came to assist, nearly emptying the country's capital of Hatzoloh members.

Many of them brought large quantities of drinking water to Bnei Brak for the hundreds of thousands of mourners who participated in the levaya. In several locations, a lack of water was particularly acute. During the internment of HaRav Shach, ztvk'l, tens fainted, unable to fathom the final lowering of the pure body of Maran Rosh Hayeshiva, ztvk'l into his plot in the Ponevezh Cemetery.

Dozens of people required treatment during the actual funeral procession. Treatment was given by the dedicated volunteer members of Hatzoloh, who administered first-aid to mourners who fainted due to overheating from the dangerously claustrophobic press of the crowds. MDA reports that its staff treated about 50 people who were feeling ill during the levaya. Approximately ten of them were brought to hospitals for further treatment. All of them are considered to be in minimal danger.

As noted, many Bnei Brak residents prepared jugs of water for drinking purposes together with plastic cups for the hundreds of thousands of levaya participants. Some of the residents of Bnei Brak and adjacent Ramat Gan also supplied water for netilas yodayim after the levaya.


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