An Levaya was held on Monday afternoon in Sao Paulo, Brazil, but the story behind it is quite incredible.
A year and a half ago in the Santa Casa of São Paulo (public hospital) an individual by the name Samuel Fishman passed away. The hospital searched for the next of kin and family. They announced his death in a newspaper for six months, and sadly, no one came to claim the body.
The hospital then requested legal permission to do studies with the body in the Santa Casa, and were granted permission. The body was placed into a freezer, where it remained for more than a year.
One day around three months ago, a Jewish woman went to the local market to purchase bananas. When she arrived home, she happened to glance at the newspaper which the bananas were wrapped in and came across the old ads from the hospital looking for family of “Samuel Fishman”.
Without even knowing who Samuel Fishman was, she went to the hospital and began asking questions, and seeking information. She was told that the body was frozen and would be used for “studies”. The woman then went to the local Chevra Kadisha to get involved. The Chevra Kadisha appealed to the courts to have the body released, and after 3 months of tireless efforts, succeeded in releasing the body for burial in the Jewish cemetery in Embu.
Volunteers from the Chevrah Kadisha lead by Rav Shie Pasternak participated in the Tahara for Mr. Samuel Fishman on Erev Tisha B’av, and confirmed that incredibly no study was done, and the Niftar was not even touched for a year and half!
This story is nothing less than Hashgacha Pratis that this woman who happened to purchase some bananas, in that hour, that day, with that vendor, wrapped in that old newspaper, that Samuel Fishman Z”L could be brought to Kever Yisroel.
(Chaim Shapiro – YWN)
Other than a Jewish name, did they actually determine who he was? An important fact like that ought to be mentioned.
I would like to know how come no one in the Jewish community knew he passed away for that long? Was he unaffiliated? could it be that perhaps he did not live in Brazil or perhaps not it that particular city but was actually traveling?