Rabbi Yitzchok Zirkind, a respected figure in the Crown Heights Jewish community who held key positions in its institutions, passed away on Monday.
He was 57.
A son of Rabbi Eliezer and Raizel Zirkind, was was raised in a family that is known for its stringent standards and that continues to wear Polish chassidic clothing, tracing back to the “Malachim” group.
After marrying Shterna, daughter of the Rabbi Yitzchok Dovid Groner of Melbourne, he lived and built his family in Crown Heights.
He was a talmid chacham with broad and deep knowledge in Torah, chassidus and especially halacha. For many years he has assisted local rabbonim in answering questions and in dinei Torah.
It was that background that led Moshe Rubashkin, then Chairman of the Vaad Hakohol, to introduce Rabbi Zirkind in 2006 as a candidate for membership in the Crown Heights Beis Din.
He was voted in alongside Rabbi Shlomo Segal and Rabbi Yitzchok Raitport.
Friends say Rabbi Zirkind never accepted the position and instead focused on repairing the CHK (Crown Heights Kosher supervision) and traveled to Uruguay and Iowa to oversee meat plants.
For a living, he worked as a bookkeeper for Associated Beth Rivkah Schools in Crown Heights. His colleague there Rabbi Benji Stock remembers him as “a friendly, eidel and nice person.”
“He always sat and learned,” Stock told COLlive.com. “His desk was filled with seforim and when he would wait on the line for the Internal Revenue, he would learn meanwhile.”
He is survived by his wife Shterna and children Yehuda Ber Zirkind, Sholom Zirkind, Bryna Zirkind, Nechama Dina Milecki, Menachem Mendel Zirkind, Aidale Zirkind, Levi Zirkind, Chaya Mushka Zirkind and Yosef Zirkind.
He is also survived by his parents Rabbi Eliezer Tzvi Zev and Raisel Zirkind, and siblings Yehoshua Shlomo Zirkind, Gershon Zirkind (Montreal), Shaina Rochel Schmidt, Shaza”k Zirkind (C.H.), Yaakov Mendel Zirkind (Morristown), Yehuda Michoel Zirkind (C.H.) Shmuel Yosef Zirkind, Meir Zirkind (Weston, FL), Chana Rissel Moscowitz (C.H.), Chaim Nachman, Dovid Zirkind (C.H.) and Chinka Zirkind (Ontario).
Yehi zichro boruch.