“Just another guy with a blog.  No big whoop.”

December 6, 2008

A Tribute to Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and His Wife Rivka

As you know, this young Chabad Jewish couple were heinously murdered last week by Muslim terrorists in Bombay, India. Rivka, 28, was six months pregnant with the couple's fourth child.

The Holtzbergs were aware of the dangers that surrounded them as they fostered Jewish life in Mumbai, said Rabbi Goldberg. “Next to the night stand, on the bed, there were several religious books, and next to the books was another [book]: How to Protect Yourself When Terrorists Come to Your House. “There was criticism from people who said it was irresponsible to have them in a place such as [Mumbai]. But we had security. Gavriel was conscious of the risks; he was reading the book because he was a target.”

The couple’s murder is the latest chapter in a story of personal tragedy afflicting the family. They had tried for years to conceive, but their two eldest children were born with Tay-Sachs, a terminal genetic disease. The oldest died. The second is hospitalised in Israel. At the time of her death, Rivka was six months pregnant.

This tragedy — remembering all who were murdered in Bombay during this attack — saddens me very much. I find myself thinking and praying about this often.

The couple's 2-year old orphaned son, Moshe, cries for his mother at their funeral: