Stenecourt Operation Survivors
I (Rabbi Simmonds) have visited two of our SOS families several times in recent years, and as I have said from the pulpit before it is a tremendous credit to our Kehilla that we are directly helping two families across the miles. We can only begin to imagine what these families have been through. They are deeply appreciative of what Stenecourt does and feel close to our community. Thanks to Martin Seitler for all the work he does in relation to this.
CHUSHI FAMILY Mr Chushi’s wife was killed by a bomb in Machane Yehuda, she went out one day never to return. He was completely devastated, his life was in pieces. We were able to help him financially, and it gave him tremendous moral support and chizzuk that a community previously unknown to him actually cares about him. When I first went to visit he still had children at home, now I believe they have all married. His family look after him as he is mentally and physically quite frail. Last time I went, I met his daughter and son in law who had just had a baby. The baby was named LIEM, because both of them had lost their mothers, Mrs Chushi in the bomb attack in Machane Yehuda, and the baby’s paternal grandmother had died of Leukaemia. This new life HAD a mother and was named LIEM as thanks to HASHEM - LI (to me) EM (there is a mother).
TRASHENDAGGON FAMILY Mr Trashendaggon was badly injured by a terrorist bomb whilst working as a security guard. When I was last there he was still unable to return to work, having a number of injuries and continuing treatments. Apart from the major financial impact of not working, there is also the impact on the family situation of young children who have a daddy who is limited in movement and can’t play a usual father’s role and there are also severe mental scars. His whole family are involved in his care and Rosa Trashendaggon (his wife) cannot praise and thank our Kehilla, and in particular Reverend Brodie, enough. I understand she sends letters to Reverend Brodie from time to time. Several years ago I went with my daughter to meet them and we were made very welcome
CONCLUSION Both The Chushi and Trashendaggon families have been devastated by acts of terror. As a Kehilla we have made a bond with each of these families and in this way, our community shows Ahavat Yisrael par excellence and that "kol Yisrael arevim zeh lozeh" all Jewish people are responsible for each other’s wellbeing. We show solidarity with Israel and its citizens. May I encourage all who can to support and continue to support this very worthy cause.
Rabbi Benjy Simmonds