The Chossid Who Asked the Frierdiker Rebbe How to Die

Tuesday, 19 Elul, marks the 76th yahrzeit of Harav Zorach Halevi Hurwitz a”h of Worcester, MA, one of the first Chabad rabbonim in America who merited to see three Rebbeim.

Tuesday, 19 Elul, marks the 76th yahrzeit of Harav Zorach Halevi Hurwitz a”h of Worcester, MA.

Born 1863 in Krupki, Rabbi Hurwitz later moved to Smolian, and frequently traveled to nearby Lubavitch. His children would tell over that their father was in Lubavitch for Simchas Torah during the nesius of the Rebbe Mahrash, and that he danced hakafos with the Rebbe Rashab.

In 1906, Rabbi Hurwitz moved to Worcester, MA. When the Frierdiker Rebbe visited in 1930, the Hurwitz family greeted him at the train station. The Rebbe gave the rov’s son a brocha for children, which was ultimately fulfilled.

Over 10 years later when the family went to Crown Heights for yechidus, the Rebbe asked Rabbi Hurwitz’s son, “Did my words have an effect on you?”

In 1944, the rov was one of the speakers at the Chai Elul Chabad conference in the presence of the Freidiker Rebbe. One of the things he mentioned was, that in deir heim they said that “Moshiach will first arrive in America.”

That same day, Rabbi Hurwitz had yechidus with the Freidiker Rabbe in which he questioned the Rebbe concerning the seder of histalkus. That very night, after leaving the zal, Rabbi Hurwitz passed away. He is buried in Worcester.

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  1. He was the mesader kiddushin of Reb Shmaya Krinsky z”l and his wife Etta Aronof (who was originally from Smilian), in 1914 in Worcestor.

  2. I am the great grandson of Rabbi Zorach Hurwitz, zl. Thank you for sharing this bittersweet memory of how Rabbi Hurwitz passed away in 1944. His son whom was mentioned in the story is my grandfather, Max (Mordechai) zl, and the child mentioned is my mother, Gittel, who celebrated recently her 89th birthday, Baruch Hashem.

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