Funeral of Rabbi Aryeh Kopinsky.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Thousands of mourners gathered outside the Bnei Torah Synagogue in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Nof on Tuesday to mourn the loss of Rabbi Aryeh Kupinsky, 43, Rabbi Avraham Shmuel Goldberg, 58, Rabbi Kalman Levine, 55, and Rabbi Moshe Twersky, 59 – all from Har Nof – who were laid to rest in the capital Tuesday afternoon following that morning’s terrorist attack.
The four rabbis – three of whom were US-Israeli citizens and the third a British- Israeli national – were murdered by two Palestinian terrorists armed with a pistol and knives in a brutal attack on the synagogue in the early morning.
Kupinsky, Levine, and Twersky made aliya from the United States and Goldberg immigrated to Israel from Britain.
“How many widows and orphans joined all of Israel this morning – four widows and 24 orphans on one street!” Rabbi Yitzhak Rubin, head of the congregation, said at the funeral.
“You cannot take a Muslim and place him in school or university or tell him to be educated, because he and his ancestors and his ancestors’ ancestors were savages,” he said in reference to the attackers. “We will not deal with revenge or responses, because we have what Moshe Rabbeinu [Moses] promised to us,” he said.
Kupinsky’s death marked a further tragedy for his family, as his 13-year-old daughter died two years ago.
“You were a man of kindness with modesty and humility,” his brother, Chaim, eulogized. Kupinsky leaves behind a wife and five children.
Yerahmiel Levine eulogized his father, Kalman, saying he “used to study [Torah] every day until late at night, when he would fall asleep at his chair.” Levine leaves behind a wife, nine children, and five grandchildren.
Pinhas Markowitz said of his brother-in-law, Shmuel Goldberg, “You were full of love for God and studying Torah and love of the individual and of health.”
Goldberg, who made aliya more than 20 years ago from Liverpool, leaves behind a wife and six children.
Following the eulogies, the victims’ children gathered together to recite the mourner’s Kaddish. The funeral procession then made its way to the capital’s Har Hamenuhot Cemetery, where three of the rabbis were laid to rest. Twersky was buried in the Sanhedria Cemetery.