Wednesday, April 1, 2020

This Will Bring Tears to Your Eyes

Shared true story from Chaya

***** if anyone would like to share this story, please attach my Zaidy's name, Moshe Ben Amrom/Moshe ben Chaya Grunwald yes that is Zaidy's actual name, same as Moshe rabbeinu, who is known for anivut, a middah that also exemplified Zaidy*****

 I want to share something that happened today. Something that if today was a normal day, could have never happened.

We were told that the funeral would be at 10 am sharp. Don't be late or we will miss it. The funerals are very minimal. And quick. Mamash a minyan and a kapittle of tehilim a kel maale rachamim and done.

The avelim came up to the aron, they begged mechila. They started the tehillim. They got to almost the end when a funeral aide walked in and took a peek in the aron. It wasn't my grandfather. We had conducted a funeral over someone else.

Everyone was shocked, horrified, dumbstruck. They sent the family out. I was in the car outside, so my sister came to tell me what had happened.

About 20 minutes later they started all over again this time with Zaidy present.

I have to admit I was so upset that this had happened to my Zaidy. The man who was loved by all. Who deserved so much kavod, who had to die alone due to a pandemic, who had to have this embarrassment of a funeral, who couldn't have a befitting burial, or shiva. This was the final insult. I was so upset, I started to laugh and cry simultaneously. I couldn't believe I was living in a time where there are so many bodies, that they mixed them up.

And then my mother called me. And she says I won't believe this story, I told her I already knew about the mixup. She said "You don't know the rest!"

The body that was brought in, it was a meis mitzvah [in Jewish law a meis mitzvah is a person that is found dead, or for whatever reason does not have family to bury him. It's the obligation of the community to bury him in a dignified way] he was dead alone in his apartment for 4 days before he was found. This man had no one there. No one to be sad, no one to say tehillim, or give him a minyan. Through a weird twist of fate, he ended up with a beautiful funeral, a minyan, something under normal circumstances he would not have had.

And then I remember my Zaidy, my Zaidy was always honored but he ran and hid from it, he never wanted the spotlight. My cousin posted that we would send people to follow him in to chupah to make sure that if they gave him a bracha he'd be there. That was part of us ensuring he got what he deserved. Even then he always thought there was someone greater than him that deserved the honor.

Well Zaidy, as usual got the last laugh. We couldn't chase him to the front of the funeral home. Even in death he gave his kavod for someone else. This is the most Zaidy like thing to ever happen.

A meis mitzvah got a funeral. I can just imagine the laugh in Zaidy's eyes as he watched this. His chesed and hachnasat orchim knew no bounds. I know in my heart my Zaidy did in death what he always did in life. Instead of my horror of earlier today I am filled with pride. As Zaidy's neshama continues to give even in death.

May Hashem heal the world quickly, so no one suffers anymore. May we celebrate smachot soon.


Anonymous said...

wow! Very amazing!

Leah said...

Wow, wow, wow!!! Unbelievable!!!!
Truly an honorable man to have this as his tribute, too!!!

moshe said...

Truly brought tears. Those who flee from honor, the highest honor runs after them. 'Mi k'amcha Yisrael'.

LondonMale said...

It is a great honour. Even in death he was able to give chesed. And I send you my condolences.

Devorah said...

Not me London Male - I am just passing the story on.

Anonymous said...

brought tears

Anonymous said...

Wow, this reminds me a bit of the story i read of a woman in Bnei Brak whose garment got caught in the doors of an Egged? bus, and she was dragged all along Rchov Akiva, passing away from the trauma.

As a result, she wound up getting a very respectable, frum levaya, and was buried as a meis mitzva in a frum cemetery.

Someone decided to investigate who this mystery woman was. He did alot of leg-work, out of conviction that there had to have been something in her past which caused her to have the zechut to merit such a respectable funeral.

Finally he zeroed in, and unearthed the mystery. She was a Russian Jewish immigrant, and years prior to this incident, she and her father used to secretly sneak out at night to the Non-Jewish cemetery (in the USSR) to ensure that the Jewish meisim who'd been buried there were dug-up, and then re-buried in the Jewish cemetery. This was a high-risk operation, but they did it anyway, l'shem mitzvah. I believe even after her father passed away, she continued doing this alone.