Jewish Man Vacationing in Switzerland is Niftar Shabbos Morning – Ambulance Took Over 1 Hour To Arrive


A Jewish man vacationing in Pontresina, Switzerland, together with his wife, was niftar on Shabbos after waiting over an hour for an ambulance to arrive. By then, there was nothing that could be done to save him R”L.

The hotel they were staying in has turned kosher, and now attracts many Jews. Guests at the hotel told Bechadrei Chareidim they believe the victim, from the United States, suffered a stroke, leading to his death.

Another guest, a woman, is quoted explaining the other Jewish guests were shocked upon hearing the news, especially amid the realization that if an ambulance would have arrived in a timely fashion, and not after an hour wait then they may have been able to save him.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic consider a Nazi Salute to be a criminal offense. But not the Swiss. Does that tell us something?
    Rav Moshe za”zal referred to the USA as a medina of chesed etc. When you go to any other Country, don’t count
    on that. Did I say “Any other country”.

    Swiss court rules that Nazi salute may be ‘personal statement’, not racism
    Switzerland’s federal tribunal argues that gesture made in public is a crime only if it is being used to spread racist ideology
    Associated Press in Geneva
    Wed 21 May 2014 13.50 EDT First published on Wed 21 May 2014 13.50 EDT
    Police watch neo-Nazis during national holiday celebrations on Lake Lucerne’s Rütli meadow,

    A Nazi salute is not illegal racial discrimination provided that it is intended as a personal statement, Switzerland’s top court ruled .

    The federal tribunal’s ruling, entitled Hitler salute in public not always punishable, said on Wednesday that the gesture was a crime only if someone was using it to spread racist ideology, not simply declaring one’s own conviction.

    The ruling by the Lausanne-based court overturned the conviction last year by a lower court of a man who was charged with racial discrimination after he took part in an August 2010 demonstration with 150 participants.

    The demonstration took place a week after Swiss National Day was marked on the Rütli meadow above Lake Lucerne where, according to legend, the Swiss Confederation was born in 1291.

    The court said the man substituted the Swiss oath with a 20-second Nazi salute. But it said the gesture was only punishable if it was being used to spread, advertise or propagate racist ideology with the intention of influencing others.

    The gesture is a criminal offence in Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic. A Swiss law in 1995 forbids racist symbols to be displayed to promote racist ideologies.

    For more than a decade, the Swiss have grappled with right-wing extremists disrupting Swiss National Day celebrations on Rütli with Nazi symbols.

    The August 2010 incident occurred two months after the Swiss federal council of seven ministers, including the president, decided not to ban the Nazi salute and swastika symbol in Switzerland. A federal anti-racism commission called that a bad decision that would have “serious consequences”,

  2. Oh my! Are you out of your mind. Nothing against America but with so much crime and gun death I hardly call this chesed. Every country has its negatives and also positives. Your article does so little for anyone and anything. It’s cherrypicking. But what it does it shows how comfortable and secure you believe to be in the goldene medine. In case you haven’t realised it: We are in Golus my friend! (And let me burst your bubble: even America and yes also Switzerland are considered Golus.)
    And if you really think that this sad story has anything to do with your interpretation of how swiss view Jews, think again.
    Thousands of Jews are spending their Summer in the Swiss Alps. Many many families are making a parnoso with this….(including myself). Unrelated Comments like yours have absolutely no positive impact and do not help anyone. Certainly not in this context.
    One of my guests who was pushed off his bike was flown within 10 minutes (yes! 10!!!) by Helicopter to the next specialist hospital after a x-ray presumed internal bleeding. Now that’s Chessed!

  3. A terrible situation, the guests will have been devastated. His poor wife, now she has to deal with the Swiss authorities, which must be very stressful on top of her grief. Only a medical professional can determine if the niftar could have been saved. That said, why don’t these hotels that cater to foreigners (who often don’t speak the language & don’t have any knowledge of the system) have a concierge doctor & basic supplies – including a defibrillator, oxygen & epi-pens. Same problem on aircraft. The bigger cruise ships have hospital facilities.

  4. Medina of Chesed refers to the Government, not criminals. Read and understand a Post before ranting and making an irrelevant reply. My Post illustrated the mentality there at the highest levels. If you researched their history, you would find that racism existed from medieval times to present day. Why do you think they were allowed to remain neutral in WWII. Where do you think all the robbed and stolen gold in WWII was deposited, by a certain country. Do some research and you will find out the unfortunate truth.

  5. People go to many places Not THINKING PROPERLY About What MEDICAL CARE ACCESS they will have there! This includes all European countries, Greece, Central and South America, also Catskills and other remote areas on Shabbos and holidays! THINK ABOUT IT BEFORE YOU TRAVEL!!

  6. “By then, there was nothing that could be done to save him R”L.”

    Funny – Like it would have made a difference! Do you know how many people in the US die right away from having a stroke?!?

  7. torah613ami
    Just for your information the USA (medina of chesed) “does not” consider a Nazi Salute to be a criminal offense.
    This tragedy should be a lesson to all of us, when travelling we should check out not only the Kashrus of the places we stay at, but also the access to medical care in the area. Chmurah S’kanta

  8. How can anyone know if the ambulance arrived sooner the person would have been saved? I know a Flatbush Hatzalah member who was in EY in October and on Shabbos Morning saw the Umited Hatzaloh motorcycles pull up to his hotel at 7:00 AM. He went to the and offered his assistance. They were there in response to a victim of a heart attack but unfortunately were too late. They had arrived within minutes of the call. A quick response doesn’t always help. May the family of the person have a nechamah.

  9. His name is Raziel Yehuda Breuer (check out the Nichum Aveilim section on YW), but nobody seems to know if there was a levaya in NY.

  10. rif: Every country has different procedures for releasing a dead person to be flown to another country. Fortunately in the NY area (not just Brooklyn) various organizations (including Misaskim, Chesed Shel Emes, Hatzolah, chevra kaddisha’s and Bikur Cholims) have worked long and hard with the NYC Medical Examiner’s office to have the process we have today for Kovod Hameis. This is not true in other countries. Years ago I worked for a funeral home and it once took 3 days to have someone who was niftar in Mexico to be flown to NY.

  11. I, personally, was there when it happened, from the moment when his wife ran around calling for help and crying that her husband passed out or passed away!!
    We called an ambulance right away and it took ‘only’ 25 minutes till they arrived. They had to come from another town, not far away. Of course even that was a long time, The headline about 1 hour is a complete lie!
    A guest there , who is in Hazolo, and another guest who learned Hazolo work, were at the man whitin minutes of his wife’s call and stated to us that there is nothing to do anymore.
    The swiss athourities in this vacinity (Graubunden) handled the case with upmost respect and speed, getting all the needed documents whitin 6 hours. Even though the official offices are closed on Saturday. They even brought the documents on Shabos to the hotel so that we need not wait till monday when the offices open again!