Rebbetzin Devorah Svei a”h


It is with great sadness that reports the passing of Rebbetzin Devorah Svei a”h.

Rebbetzin Svei was the wife of Rav Elya Svei zt”l, rosh yeshiva of Yeshiva of Philadelphia, and a daughter of Rav Avrohom Kalmanowitz zt”l, famed Torah pioneer in America and founder of the Mirrer Yeshiva in Brooklyn.

Rebbetzin Svei was a noted mechaneches, who, in addition to serving as a devoted eizer kenegdo to her illustrious husband in his leadership of the American Torah world, educated and inspired generations of bnos Yisroel, being mechanech them b’derech Yisroel saba.

The Rebbetzin was a pillar of support for her husband, the Philadelphia Rosh Yeshiva, who led Klal Yisroel in the United States for decades. Known for his brilliance in Torah, Rav Elya led numerous battles to protect our treasured mesorah and to protest those who wished to compromise our way of life and adherence to Torah living. His acumen and genius was legendary. A true manhig and gadol in his time, Rav Elya was the rosh hamedabrim in the Torah world for years, in addition to being a venerated rosh yeshiva whose shiurim were famous for their clarity and depth. Rav Elya, one of the primary talmidim of Rav Aharon Kotler zt”l, in the mid-1950s joined ybl”c Rav Shmuel Kamenetsky in leading the Philadelphia Yeshiva. Rav Elya was also a member of the Moeztes Gedolei HaTorah of Agudas Yisroel of America. It is thanks to the rebbetzin that Rav Elya was able to devote his life to Klal Yisroel and to his talmidim. Rav Elya passed away in 2009.

The rebbetzin leaves behind her children, Rav Yehuda Svei, rosh yeshiva at the Philadelphia Yeshiva; Mrs. Lakee Gorelick, wife of Rav Isser Gorelick of South Fallsburg; Mrs. Sori Dick, wife of Rav Mordechai Dick, rosh yeshiva of Yeshiva Heichal Hatorah; Mrs. Nechama Lipschutz, wife of Rav Yosef Lipschutz, R”M in Yeshiva Nachlas Tzvi in Toronto; Rav Meir Simcha Svei of Lakewood; Rav Avrohom Svei, Rav Aharon Shlomo Svei, Rav Chaim Yosef Svei and Reb Malkiel Svei of Lakewood.

The levayah will take place tomorrow, at 9 a.m., at the Philadelphia Yeshiva, located at 6063 Drexel Road in Philadelphia, PA. (Shacharis will be at 7 a.m.) The aron will leave at 11 a.m. to Newark International Airport. The aron will then be flown to Eretz Yisroel for kevurah on Har Hazeisim in Yerushalayim.

The family will be returning to the United States Wednesday morning.

Yehi zichrah boruch.

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