UPDATE & VIDEO LINKS BELOW: (9:00AM EST) Major Jewish philanthropist Mogul Moises Saba Z”L was killed late Sunday afternoon in a helicopter crash in Mexico City along with three family members. Saba was 47-years-old. Also in the chopper at the time of the crash was his wife, their son Avraham (Albert) and his daughter-in-law. The pilot was also killed. There were no survivors on board.
It appears heavy fog conditions led to limited visibility, resulting in a chopper blade striking a building.
Highly-credible sources tell YWN that they had just returned from Flatbush, Brooklyn, where his sister had just made an engagement party at their home on Avenue S – in the Syrian Community. They had spend Shabbos in Flatbush, attended the party on Motzei Shabbos, and flew back to Mexico via airplane on Sunday. After landing, they transferred from a plane to chopper.
A private jet left NYC for Mexico at approximately 3:30AM on Sunday night/Monday morning for the Levaya, with family members, and at least one member of Flatbush Hatzolah – a highly recognized Askan in the Syrian community
R’ Moises was a major supporter of Torah institutions in Eretz Yisrael and around the world. He was especially close to Chacham Ovadia Yosef Shlita and his family. HaGaon HaRav Yitzchak Yosef, a son of the Rav and rosh yeshiva of Yechavei Daat is heading to New Mexico for the levaya. HaGaon HaRav David Yosef, another son, is expected to leave later today as well.
The niftar prided himself with hosting shiurim from his home, including a recent visit from Maran Rav Aaron Leib Shteinman Shlita, who delivered words of chizuk to the local community.
Two years ago he was in Eretz Yisrael for Lag B’Omer, renting six helicopters to fly his entourage to the Tzion, as well as rabbonim including Rishon L’Tzion HaRav Moshe Shlomo Amar Shlita.
Zaka, another organization that enjoyed strong support from the niftar is sending a special team to the scene. The details of the levaya to be announced. The matter of the levaya is being discussed with rabbonim in Eretz Yisrael as one of the questions entails waiting for another son, Chaim, who learns in Yeshivas Kol Torah in Eretz Yisrael.
According to a Kol Chai Radio report, Rishon L’Tzion HaGaon HaRav Moshe Shlomo Amar has instructed them to wait with the levaya until the Zaka team arrives to ensure the kvura includes all the body parts as demanded by halacha.
VIDEO LINKS: Click HERE for video of the scene from Mexican TV, and click HERE to see Jamie Saba (son of Moises Z”L) arguing with cops to get into the accident scene. It appears that he was eventually let in [approx 20 seconds into clip]
Update on Levaya of Chopper Crash Victims 7:31PM IL:
According to Rav David Yosef Shlita, interviewed moments ago on Kol Chai Radio, the levaya of the members of the Saba family will “most likely get underway in about two hours although it is not yet final”.
The Rav explained he was associated with the niftar for over 20 years, praising his attributes. The Rav will not make it in time for the levaya but is heading to Mexico City later Monday night [Israel time].
He added that the son (Avraham/ Alberto) recently established a new shul and he, the Rav, was present for the ceremony. Avraham told his father that there was enough money and he wanted to return to the Beit Medrash. He too learned in Kol Torah in Yerushalayim. His wife z”l was not yet 20 and they left behind a 1-year-old infant.
(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)