BDE: Chacham Shalom Cohen, zt”l
By: Boropark24 Staff
With deep sadness we relay the news that Rav Shalom Cohen, Rosh Yeshivat Porat Yosef, and leader of the Shas party and its tens of thousands of members from the Sephardic community, has passed away in Yerushalayim. He was 91 years of age, and had been unwell in recent months.
He was born in the Old City of Yerushalayim in the year 1931. His father was a great talmid chacham, and he named his son for the great mekubal, Rav Shalom Sharabi.
He learned under Rav Ezra Attias in Yeshivat Porat Yosef, and after his marriage, he became one of its leaders. In this capacity, he shaped numerous talmidim, many of whom are marbitzei Torah and mekarvim in the Sephardic world today. In later years, he established a branch of the yeshiva in the Ge’ulah neighborhood.
For many decades, he resided in the old city, adjacent to the yeshiva, and later moved to the Ramot neighborhood, where throngs would flock to see him.
Following the passing of Rav Ovadia Yosef in 2013, Rav Cohen was appointed the head of the Shas party—and was responsible for its direction for close to a decade, following his decades of prominence within the movement.
Last Monday, he was taken to the hospital with an infection. Tefillos were recited on his behalf around the country. Alas, his condition deteriorated over the ensuing days, and in the early morning hours of Monday, he returned his soul to its Maker, with his family by his side.
The levaya will take place Monday in Yerushalayim, and it is sure to draw vast crowds from throughout the land who will come to mourn a lost leader.