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Sunday, June 23, 2013

Pictures from the funeral and cemetery

 
As usual, I had my trusty old camera with me at my mother's funeral.  I may have taken some of the pictures, for sure those before the actual funeral.  Then I'm pretty sure I handed it to a friend.  My mother is buried in the New Montefiore  Cemetery out on Long Island.  We got off at Exit 49 on the LIE and drove south.

My parents had bought their burial plots there in the Oakland Jewish Center section in about 1959. 


I'm pretty sure they lived next to us when we
were in the five room duplex in Bell Park Gardens.
They were founding members of the shul, Oakland Jewish Center, Bayside NY.  I was hoping to see lots of people I knew, I mean their names on tombstones.  No doubt I'll be back, and then I'll find their old friends.

My father has a lot of relatives in the Neshelsk (a city in Poland that once had a very large active Jewish community) section of a different cemetery.  A cousin was there visiting her parents and grandparents in between my mother's death and funeral.  She told them the news about my mother.

My mother's grave is near one of the outside walls.  It was pretty noisy, but that shouldn't bother her now.

Covering the grave was a group effort.  Due to a shoulder injury I was pretty useless with the shovel.  But I did drop a stone from Shiloh into the grave.  I had brought it with me to make sure my mother had something special from ארץ ישראל Eretz Yisrael, the Land of Israel.  Most of my mother's grandchildren and all of her great-grandchildren are in Israel.

I was surprised at how much deeper she's buried than we do here in Israel.  There are other differences, the American legally required coffin versus just the shrouds wrapped in a Tallit.  No, I didn't take up the offer to check/see the body.  My brother was pleased at how the shroud covered her.  She was in the simple coffin as all traditional Jews request.  There are many more "traditional Jews" when it comes to burials than living and breathing Jews.

In my community, Shiloh, Israel, actual "kri'ah," ripping of the clothes is the accepted standard.  My high school friend, with whom I had become religious almost fifty years ago,  did the first cut with a knife and Rabbi Dale Polakoff of the Great Neck Synagogue supervised, making sure that the rip was long enough.

Rabbi Polakoff made sure that my mother was well covered.  When the family and friends were gathering to leave, we could still he him heaving the earth onto my mother.  He was overheard telling the cemetery workers that he would take care of it himself.  I'd say that the Great Neck Synagogue is in good hands.



Baruch Dayan Ha'Emet
 
Shirley Spiegelman
שפרה בת אברהם וחיה ריזיה
Shifra bat Avraham and Chaya Raisia
 
לעילוי נשמתה
Li'ilu'i Nishmata
May her Soul be Elevated

4 comments:

Ruti Mizrachi said...

Amen. May her dear daughter continue to be a living aliyah to her neshama, through her love of the Land of Israel, her love of her family, her loyalty to her friends, among her other midot tovot.

A Soldier's Mother said...

Baruch Dayan Emet - can't be many things as hard as what you've just done and yet it was wonderful that you took a piece of Eretz Yisrael there, to be a beacon, a homing in device, when moshiach comes to bring your mother home. Sending tons of love (and commiserating with the hurt shoulder...)

Leah, Maaleh Adumim said...

amen to both of the comments here

Batya said...

thank you all so much