Incredible Story Of Achdus Following The Tragic Flatbush Fire


The following story was sent home to the parents body of the Bochrim in Yeshiva Ohavei Torah in Riverdale:

Dear Parents,

With heavy hearts, we reflect upon the tragic events which befell Klal Yisroel through the Azzan family. We at Yeshiva need to shoulder the burden together with Klal Yisroel in response to HKB”H’s calling and in our quest of self-improvement.

On Zos Chanukah, our Menahel Shlita encouraged the Bochurim to see this as their tragedy and to respond in a way that’s meaningful and to create real improvements in their Avodas Hashem. He noted that we would all gain if we took our davening more seriously, more respectfully and learned in added time that we don’t have as a zchus to the family members who need a Refuah and Lzecher Nishmas of those who perished.

He mentioned an idea to use the time after Shemona Esrei to learn Mishnayos as we wait for the Chazzan. This would add decorum to the Tefilah together with the zchus of Limud Hatorah. The idea B”H took hold and over 60 of our boys are learning came forward to join the program.

We immediately sent an Uber to pick up Artscroll Mishnayos on Nezikin and handed out to the boys. That very mincha, the boys began their tremendous determination to finish perakim. By Sunday, many boys had already finished Bava Kamma in Mishnayos utilizing time they never knew existed—many including their commuting time. Charts were posted (as noted in the photos) to keep abreast of the boys accomplishment and inspiring more and more growth.

As only Hashgacha could have it, Mr. Shmuel Baron, president of Kehilat Keter Torah—the congregation where the Azzan family are members at—came to visit yeshiva for a totally unrelated matter. With intentions to visit with his partner for just a few minutes, Mr. Baron noticed the sign and letters describing the program hanging and immediately broke down crying. He spent much time inquiring the details of the program and taking photos of the sign. He immediately went to the Azzan shivah giving them much chizuk and Nechama knowing Klal Yisroel was being Misabel and Mischazek with them. In the photos you will see the correspondence from his congregation to the Yeshiva. Let’s continue to be mechazek and Marbeh K’vod Shemayim. We are proud of our boys.

As YWN has been reporting, community Rabbonim led by HaRav David Ozeri (who is the family Rov) are raising much needed funds for the family. There are staggering expenses that raised funds are being used for.

Please open your hearts and make a donation in the memory of the fire victims, Mrs. Aliza Azan A”H (39) – the mother of Moshe Azan Z”L (11), Yitzchak Azan Z”L (7), and Henrietta Azan A”H (3), and in the Zechus for Refuah Shelaima for the injured family members who need tremendous Rachamei Shomayim.

Please continue to say Tehillim for Shilat bas Louza Aliza (16), Daniel ben Louza Aliza (15), and Yosef ben Ahuva Masuda – the father.

The fund can be found on The Chesed Fund website, or by clicking here to be redirected.

(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)


  1. Nice idea but unfortunately misguided.
    Racing to end davening to learn is a bad lesson for life.
    I’m sure there are other times to add learning as a zechus. Davening is relegated second class as is, we need to be mechazik it.

  2. @1&2- Why, raboisai, why the need to be negative?! Why can’t we just reserve our negativity and look just for the good- and this post is full of AMAZING good!

  3. @#2: FYI- (And I sincerely hope this doesn’t open the door to length-of-davening-in-yeshiva-bashing) Many yeshivos have a long time for the quiet shmonah esrei, as a way of training bachurim to daven properly. (And that is how I, as a young mesivta bachurim, personally came to appreciate every word of tefillah.) But as not all bachurim utilize every moment- so why not use the extra 1-4 minutes for learning? Nowhere in the post is any mention made of encouraging a lessening of dveikus b’tefillah…

  4. #1 and 2…I don’t even know how to react to your negativity??? I teared up reading this – and teared up even more after reading your comments.
    Why, I ask – WHY??

  5. Amazing!!!! Yeshiva Ohavei Torah is really making a kiddush hashem! Whoever is in doubt should come by and check it out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!