BDE: The Chuster Rebbe, Rav Shmiel Shmelka Leifer, zt”l
BY YS Gold
It is with deep sadness we report on the petirah of the Chuster Rebbe, a pillar of Torah and chassidus for the Boro Park community and beyond, an individual who impacted thousands of lives with his entire heart and soul.
The Rebbe was born to his illustrious father, Rav Aaron Moshe Leifer of Chust, who traced his lineage generation after generation to the Admorim of Chust and Nadvorna. The Rebbe’s father was a tremendous ga’on, and spent years in numerous communities in America. Everywhere he went, he brought Yidden closer to Hashem. His son, Rav Shmelke, would inherit that fire and bren, and love of his fellow Yidden.
After marrying the Rebbetzin, the daughter of Reb Shloime Baruch Rigler, an ardent Bobover chossid, the Rebbe launched a sterling career of harbotzas Torah that would shape thousands of lives.
Among the mosdos where he was marbitz Torah, were the yeshivos of Krasna and Ger, and later his very own yeshiva. The plight of bachurim, who struggled to find yeshivos pained the Rebbe to no end, and he would go to the ends of the earth for a single talmid. This love stands out most for his countless talmidim.
In addition, the Rebbe was an orator that enflamed hearts with his fiery words. Over the decades, he would speak everywhere, inspiring the crowds with his Torah and with his heart.
The Rebbe was unwell in recent years and was unable to go around speaking, but those who knew continued to flock to his door, warming themselves by his glow.
Sadly, the Rebbe returned his soul to its maker on Sunday afternoon at the untimely age of 73.
The levaya will take place at 10:00 Monday morning at the Rebbe’s beis medrash, 16th Avenue and 55th Street. Kevurah will be at the Har Shaloim cemetery in Monsey.