HaGaon HaRav Yitzchok Dovid Grossman Shlita, chief rabbi of Migdal HaEmek spoke following the petira of Maran Rav Elyashiv ZT”L.
The rav simply stated גדולה האבידה ואין לה תמורה, telling the tzibur that when he was a youth, his later father HaGaon HaRav Yisroel Grossman ZT”L, Rosh Yeshivas Pinsk Karlin was the late posek hador’s chavrusa. He told how the two learned for hours on end, becoming very close friends over the years. He explains that over the years they became extremely close, so much so that when he told R’ Elyashiv of his father’s petira Rav Elyashiv collapsed.
Rav Grossman explains that in his home, Rav Elyashiv was used as an example for them to emulate regarding his learning and his midos, an example of how one is to act. He was sent to Rav Elyashiv by his father on numerous occasions to inquire regarding halachic issues.
The rav explains he will never forget standing at the foot of the legendary Ohel Sara Shul and watch Rav Elyashiv learning for hours, at times, from morning until night without interruption. “He would lock himself inside as not to be bothered. Only his voice could be heard outside, the tunes that accompany me to this very day”.
“In addition to his total commitment to learning was his mastery of halacha, his clarity of mind and decisive rulings – a clarity that one does not find elsewhere or in other areas of life. There simply was no subject that rav was not familiar with, stating his opinion on issues of health, politics, economics or whatever. He was the Urim V’tumim for the Jewish world. Emissaries were sent to him to confer from communities around the world. They sent their questions and inquiries. With his abilities to decide and clarify issues, complex issues, he stopped and responded for this was his lot, to respond to the questions, דבר ה’.
“He was practical and never engaged in speculation. There were no superfluous words.
“Halacha reigned supreme and he cried from the depths of his heart over any and all infractions in adherence to halacha.
“His zealousness towards adherence to every minute detail of halacha was frightening.
“I am certain that his guidance and leadership that are gone will create a void in the world of torah and for our generation as the pillar of fire is no longer.”
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)