Sunday, March 2, 2008
The Great-Grandson Said Kaddish
We were at the cemetery last night. Shiloh no longer has a resident who's over one hundred years old. He was buried in the first row. Considering how "new" the cemetery is, it's pretty full.
Why did the great-grandson say "Kaddish?"
There was no son.
The man's daughter had cared for him with great devotion.
The man's grandson was dead, already. It was his son, a young-looking boy, barely in his teens, though well experienced in saying the Mourners' Prayer, who said the Kaddish.
Our late neighbor was one of those we visited on Simchat Torah. He tried to honor us. We saw his war medals, from his WWII service in the Soviet Armed Forces. He worked his garden until a short while ago.
One of the neighbors who eulogized him spoke of seeing him pick up his great-grandchildren from pre-school (when the four generations all lived here in Shiloh) and would would walk them all the way up the hill. He must have been about 90 years old at the time.
The year he turned one-hundred, he was invited to the official party at the President's Residence in Jerusalem. The family was told that a taxi would pick him up at a specific time. They were ready and waited... and waited... After numerous phone calls, it was discovered that the taxi had gone to Shiloh Street in Nachla'ot, Jerusalem, not realizing that he lived in the real Shiloh. Transportation was quickly organized from here, but by the time he arrived, the celebration was over.
How dangerously pathetic that the staff of the President of Israel can't conceive of the fact that Jews live in Biblical Shiloh.
HaMakom y'nachem... May G-d comfort the Mourners