BDE: Dr. Yehoshua Weinstein, z”l, Founder of Numerous Boro Park Institutions
Family, friends, and scores of admirers and associates of Dr. Yehoshua Weinstein was stunned this past Shabbos with the news of his sudden passing.
A longtime resident of Boro Park, he did not tire of working on behalf of our community—and has left us in the midst of his work on myriads of initiatives.
As a longtime community activist, representing the Orthodox community and its institutions at the highest levels of government, Ezra Friedlander has had a front row seat to the incredible work of Dr. Weinstein within our community.
"Dr. Weinstein was a trailblazer who enhanced the landscape of countless children with autism by establishing the first school for children with autism in Boro Park, serving the entire community, and is acknowledged as a model school by leading experts," said Mr. Friedlander, who has been involved with Shema Koleinu for many years. “The field of educating children with autism was in its infancy, and Dr. Weinstein recognized the crucial need for such a school.”
Dr. Weinstein grew up in Williamsburg, where he davened in Vien, and learned in Satmar and Zhelim. He married the former Debbie Itzkowitz of Boro Park, and that is when he moved here, remaining here for the next half century—taking an outsized role in building this community.
He was one of the pillars of the Ungvar community, and was extremely close with Rav Menashe Klein, as well as ybl”ch, the current Rov, shlit”a. Also in Ungvar, he learned Torah under the old Yoka Rov, and developed a lifelong kesher with him.
Rav Yehuda Leib Koenig, the current Yoka-Chechevitzer Rov related: “He was a goldene mentch, filled with emunah and bitachon, and was on the vaad to erect a new Yoka-Chechevitzer shul. He was supposed to speak at the groundbreaking… but he was taken from us in the midst of his avodas hakodesh.”
Never content with the things he had already accomplished, Dr. Weinstein always looked for more that he can do. Another monumental initiative of his in recent years is the founding of Emunas Beis Yaakov, a high school that has gained a beautiful reputation for stellar high school chinuch habanos within the Boro Park community—filling a crucial need. It was once again due to Dr. Weinstein’s never taking no for an answer that this beautiful mossad came into being.
Friedlander, who has worked with Dr. Weinstein for close to two decades, recalls his motto: “P.U.S.H—Pray Until Something Happens. But Dr. Weinstein was never one to be satisfied with prayer alone… he also pushed! And that’s what made him so effective,” reflects Ezra.
“This is a monumental loss to the Boro Park community, and to the greater Jewish community—but the fruits of his tireless work will continue to be felt for decades,” he adds.
The levaya was held in Yerushalayim on Sunday and Shiva will be observed by, ybl”ch, his wife Mrs. Debbie Weinstein, Sons: Yitzchok, Zvi Dov, Aryeh, Avrumi, Eli and daughters: Suri Gruen and Faigie Schonbrun until Thursday morning at 1631 55th Street 2nd Floor Brooklyn NY.