A GIANT IS LOST: Petirah of longtime Lakewood Askan Reb Zeev Rothschild Z”L; A Life of Chesed [Tentative Levaya Info – Updated]

Today, Lakewood lost a giant – a brilliant, humble, soft-spoken, huge-hearted Baal Chesed. Reb Zeev Rothschild Z’L.

The patron of difficult and lost causes. When there was a Machlokes that was unsolvable – we called Reb Zeev. A family fighting in a divorce with no resolution in sight – we called Reb Zeev. You would never see his name in print, but if you needed help you knew who to go to – Reb Zeev.

“Our hearts are too broken to articulate the loss of this Tzaddik, who lived for the Klal and for the Yachid and never for himself,” said Reb Aaron Kotler. “I think of his office, somewhat messy, with a million things going on, and of Reb Zeev there with total aplomb, dealing with everything in its proper time and place. I think of a man who never said no. And of a man who if you presented the most intractable problem to him would respond as if it were the smallest matter – his brain would immediately begin to churn with ideas and action plans on how to solve it.”

Among his many projects, Reb Zeev Z”L founded NPGS.

“How much money did he save our Tzibbur with NPGS?” says Reb Aaron. “How many families did he save from ruin? How many Almanos and Yesomim did he ensure had their needs met? How many poor families had bread on their table because of him? What makes a group of people a true Kehilla and not just a conglomeration of individuals? Reb Zeev was that answer for us all – he made us into the beautiful Kehilla that we are, by ensuring that no need was neglected and no individual isolated.”

Reb Kotler added, “Now, in the aftermath of Coronavirus we are going to have to rebuild our lives, and first and foremost will be for each of us to step up to the plate a bit more to fill the gap left by his tragic petira.”

He turned 61 today.

Baruch Dayan Ha’emes.

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[TLS photo provided by Reb E. Hoder]

 

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46 COMMENTS

  1. TLS, your article couldn’t be more on point, and u just touched the tip of the iceberg…a Tru tzadik of our time…no words can describe the pain that I’m in rite now

  2. There are no words to describe the loss of this incredible mensch, ZaT’Zal. Only what is said above. I have worked for and consulted with him for many years. So many Gedolim have been taken from us recently, the void in the air is real, palpable. Who can fill it. A loss beyond losses. BDE.

  3. Lakewood and Klal Yisroel have lost a true giant. Many knew and many didn’t know the extent of his chessed. BDE, may his family and all those he affected in so many ways have a nechama. V’omer litzaraseinu dai.

  4. No one will ever know all that this gentle giant accomplished in life. He kept his activities very quiet. How is his very chosheve mother and family going to recover from this? Oy na lanu ki chotonu

  5. Went through a very difficult divorce and no settlement seemed possible. Reb Zeev dedicated many days and hours, without charge to help with the process. No matter how contentious things became he remained calm and focused. Very hard man to replace. BDhE

  6. I am speechless, I can’t put words to this monumental loss.

    To his great family, I have so much to say, but I honestly am sitting and crying and can’t put down correctly what I want to say.

    המקום ינחם אתכם בתוך שאר אבלים וירושלים.

  7. Lakewood has lot a giant to no words!!

    UTSHUVA!! UTEFILLA!! UTZEDAKA!!

    R’ Zeev t”l would not take a thank you or apology… When he helped others it was for one goal and one goal only – to help them. It was NOT about him, ever. No other motive other then to do what Hashem wants. He would say the correct thing, no matter if it was socially correct or comfortable, he was not afraid of doing what needed to be done to get to the goal… and the goal was always the same SHALOM!

    Im sure the family can write a book of stories… but they probably don’t even know a 1/4 of them since he kept so quiet, everything he did was so btzniyus! Oiy Vey How are we going to move on..!?

  8. I once wanted to do a story on the history of NPGS. Rabbi Rothschild was very gracious to provide any photos he may have had. The only thing that stopped me from this endeavor was, he was adamant, and how gently adamant, about mentioning his name. End of story. Impossible to write.

  9. As much as people know what he did, he did 100x more. He ran away from pirsum and kovod. A real askan l’maan hakodosh boruch hu. We will need 10 people to replace what he did. His house was a reshus harabbim and he was hefker la’kol. Al eila ani bochia, eini eini yorda maiyim.

  10. Oye! HaShem! Is this not an Olah Temima w/o any Mum!?
    You took our best!
    How many more?! Please HaShem if he’s not a kapara for us we are lost
    Send us the ultimate Geulah!

  11. Devastating news. Most likely the biggest bal chesed in Lakewood and certainly the quietest one. R’ Zeev was osek in chesed until 2-3AM every night and would daven vasikin so not sure when he slept. Nothing was beyond his scope, and he was attentive to details even the most minute things. He never acknowledged his greatness and was shy and unresponsive to any praise. He is an irreplaceable giant that will be missed by all those that knew him, and by many others as well that have benefited for years from him without even knowing.

  12. When I was concerned that a difficult, dishonest individual may attempt to avoid responsibility for his criminal actions in connection with a civil case in which he was properly being pursued for robbing people blind by making up stories about me, I spoke with R’ Ze’ev. He saw how concerned I was, talked things over with the parties involved, and, thankfully, that individual didn’t make up any stories, bh.

    I will never forget that.

  13. Nobody has a clue what this great Tzaddik did for the klal. tens of thousands of Yechidim have been helped with this Tzaddik over and over again. Never mind his Tefilla’s, who will ever forget the demus of this Tzaddik davening every day? the Demus of his yomom noroim, when he stood on his feet for hours and hours? Oh Hashem, you took such a giant of a korbon from us, please let it be enough with this eis tzorah… the pain is too big to take…. so many yesomim and almonos whom he was ready for them at any hour of the day and night… how many mikvoos did he build? there are no words…. the pain is too big….

  14. Wow what a loss i have tremendous hakoras hatov to R Ze’ev. He helped me when I was a young yungerman. He did everything in a unassuming way….Chaval al diavdin!

  15. When my husband got sick, he was able to get us health insurance to help my husband get in touch with top doctors for a successful surgery bh. A true hero. A void in the community is now asking to be filled. May Hashem bring Nechama to the family.

  16. BDE. I feel like he was taken as a kaparah for us. there are no words to describe our feelings of lose.
    if anybody has levaya and shiva info, please post. thank you.

  17. My wife and I are speahless and heartbroken.

    What a Ailiger mench
    What a Baal midos
    What a Baal chesed
    What a Choshuver mench
    What a Darling
    What a Davening
    What a Ehrlacher mench
    What a Frendlacher mench
    What a Gadol
    What a Holy man
    What a Incredible man
    What a Jewel
    What a Kind person
    What a Korbon oiloh for klal yisroel
    What a Lamden
    What a Legend
    What a Loss
    What a Manhig
    What a Navoin
    What a Onov
    What a Pleasant mentch
    What a quiet man
    What a Rebbe
    What a Sweet man
    What a Tahor
    What a Unique man
    What a Valuable man
    What a Wonderful man
    What a Yoshor
    What a Yichus
    What a Zchus to have known him. Our family was introduced to his tzadik father zatza”l and tl”t his choshuveh mother zz”g
    Many years ago in the hospital when our son needed the 1st time a double lung transplant, we were invited to stay with them for shabbos meals and we told them that we don’t want to impose, so the mother said don’t worry you not imposing and not a problem, to our surprise the house was full of guests from all walks of life. We continued to experience their chesed for many more years.
    My wife continues to experience the Rothschild legacy of chesed, and ahavas yisroel,and hachnosas orchhim by the Lakewood mrs. B Rothschild, what a chesed home … led by reb zeev.
    His funeral will be in a time that most businesses are closed, just like it was when rabainu hakodoish reb Yehuda hanosi passed away.he left beyond such a choshuveh and beautiful family by which he lives on. I whould assume that just as he lived betznius in this world, he wanted this tzniusdige levayhe.
    Yehy zaicher tzadik vekodoish livrocho
    Yoine holtzberg

  18. It’s impossible to grasp the amount of chesed this one man did. Constantly brainstorming for new ideas to help. He came up with idea to use the trailers from bais faiga to create the beis eliyohu beis medrash. He built local shuls. Helped schools buy buldings and renovate them. Bais Rivka Rachel was his project and many others. He built many mikvaos in Lakewood the tri state, Russia etc. He sent tens of thousands of pounds of food and matzah to the ussr every year for pesach. He ran the stam gmach which lends tons of needed stuff. He was behind the vaad hatzdaka, and many other local fundraising initiatives.
    Most importantly he arranged the divorce settlements, which is an ungrateful position with many hard feelings from one or both sides. He stuck to it until he got it done. He would work for years to attain a get. And would fly to eretz yisroel to track down someone not willing to give a get. He was a non stop chesed machine.

  19. I’m sadder than I thought possible, with so many other chashuva losses. Reb Zeev was a true anav. I was at many Shabbos seudos with his family & it took me weeks to figure out what he did for a living. So humble was he about his success. He was extraordinarily temimisdik & menschlich on a personal level as well. From reading Reb Kotler’s remarks & the many comments that followed, I now know that his exemplary middos extended far and wide. He is surely zoche to be sitting by the Kisei Hakavod & I’ll bet he is still advocating for the klal.
    To his beloved family:
    המקום ינחם אתכם בתוך שאר אבלי ציון וירושלים

  20. Let us not forget his hailiga aishes chail and his kids… without their support he probably would not have been able to accomplish what he did

  21. No words to describe this great tzadik.

    He was the mother and father of the Lakewood community. A mother and father do all the underlying work for children without ever expecting any payback from their children, similarly Reb Zeev was a chesed machine, dealing with critical and vital chasadim that almost nobody would or could deal with. There was an overall feeling that he wasn’t doing anything special, he was just fulfilling his role hashem sent him do do.

    When the Chazon Ish passed away, the Brisker Rav said their is a world with the Chazon Ish and a world without him. On the same note there is Lakewood with Reb Zeev and Lakewood without Reb Zeev.

    In truth their are thousands of people that dont understand that they have lost a world today, because thousands of people would need his help in the future and they will not have him by their side.

    Im sure a great Oilam Habba awaits him !

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