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The Heartfelt Call of a Bereaved Mother

Mrs. Eva Sandler at the Levaya of her husband, chlidren – victims of the massacre in Toulouse, France.

A Call From the Heart by Mrs. Eva Sandler

My heart is broken. I am unable to speak. There are no ways for me to be able to express the great and all-consuming pain resulting from the murder of my dear husband Rabbi Jonathan and our sons, Aryeh and Gavriel, and of Miriam Monsonego, daughter of the dedicated principal of Ozar Hatorah and his wife, Rabbi Yaakov and Mrs. Monsonego.

May no one ever have to endure such pain and suffering.

Because so many of you, my cherished brothers and sisters in France and around the world, are asking what you can do on my behalf, on behalf of my daughter Liora and on behalf of the souls of my dear husband and children, I feel that, difficult though it may be, it is incumbent upon me to answer your entreaties.

My husband’s life was dedicated to teaching Torah. We moved back to the country of his birth to help young people learn about the beauty of Torah. He was truly a good man, loving, giving, and selfless. He was sensitive to all of G-d’s creatures, always searching for ways to reveal the goodness in others.

He and I raised Aryeh and Gavriel to live the ways of Torah. Who would have known how short would be their time on this Earth, how short would be the time I would be with them as their mother?

I don’t know how I and my husband’s parents and sister will find the consolation and strength to carry on, but I know that the ways of G-d are good, and He will reveal the path and give us the strength to continue. I know that their holy souls will remain with us forever, and I know that very soon the time will come when we will be together again with the coming of Moshiach.

I wholeheartedly believe in the words of the verse: “The L-ord has given, and the L-ord has taken away; blessed be the Name of the L-ord.” I thank the Almighty for the privilege, short though it was, of raising my children together with my husband. Now the Almighty wants them back with Him.

To all those who wish to bring consolation to our family and contentment to the souls of the departed: Let’s continue their lives on this Earth.

Parents, please kiss your children. Tell them how much you love them, and how dear it is to your heart that they be living examples of our Torah, imbued with the fear of Heaven and with love of their fellow man.

Please increase your study of Torah, whether on your own or with your family and friends. Help others who may find study difficult to achieve alone.

Please bring more light into the world by kindling the Sabbath candles this and every Friday night. (Please do so a bit earlier than the published times as a way to add holiness to our world.)

The holiday of Passover is approaching. Please invite another person into your homes so that all have a place at a Seder to celebrate the holiday of our freedom.
Please bring more light into the world by kindling the Sabbath candles this and every Friday night.

Along with our tearful remembrance of our trials in Egypt so many years ago, we still tell over how “in each and every generation, they have stood against us to destroy us.” We all will announce in a loud and clear voice: “G-d saves us from their hands.”

The spirit of the Jewish people can never be extinguished; its connection with Torah and its commandments can never be destroyed.

May it be G-d’s will that from this moment on, we will all only know happiness.

I send my heartfelt condolences to the Monsonego family for the loss of their daughter Miriam, and I pray for the speedy recovery of Aharon ben Leah, who was injured in the attack.

Thank you for your support and love.

Click here for the Hebrew original.

20 Comments

  • 2. Taube Speigel wrote:

    It takes a lot of courage for a someone who lost her husband and two children to a madman to write such a heart rendering account. It really touched me and my heart goes out to you and your family at this terrible time. May Hashem comfort you in your loss.

  • 3. We grieve with you wrote:

    Heartfelt sympathy to you. May you know only joy and gladness from now on,

  • 6. The strongest of them all... wrote:

    An incredible woman of valor and strength! No political speeches, no self pity, no ulterior motive, just a plain simple Jew with a beautiful soul using her disastrous moment of fame to set a true example for the world around her. This is exactly what the Frierdike Rebbe loved about the “simple” Jews. The fact that they are far from simple. Such a pure, unbreakable love of Hashem, I am jealous!

  • 7. so sad wrote:

    may you have the strength to conitinue on, noone should ever know the pain you are going thru now. I am going to take on an hachlata in memory of your dear children and husband. MNOW

  • 8. Ruth Bekoff wrote:

    What an incredible woman of faith and courage. Eve, you are an inspiration to all of us and a true Ayshes Chayil. We pray that you, your daughter and the Rabbi’s family know only peace and simcha in your lives.

  • 10. Ida Wax wrote:

    Dear Eve,
    You are truly an Eishish Chayil in the truest sense of the word. In memory of your precious family I will light an extra candle whenever I bentch licht. May Hashem give you the strength in this terribly difficult time.

  • 11. Mitzi P. wrote:

    I feel very sorry for this woman, it could have chas v’shalom happened to anyone in this world. If this is part of the bigger Moshiach plan Hashem has in mind for the yidden, then so be it… We must accept it with true faith and continue to be simchadik in all our ways. It’s just that our emotions truly get in the way, this is the hardest, and I mean the toughest toughest part of the plan. OY VAY OY VAY OY VAY AD MOSAI AD MOSAI AD MOSAI — EVA – WE ARE WITH YOU TOGETHER AS ONE FAMILY — YOUR LOVING HUSBAND AND CHILDREN ARE ROOTED DEEPLY IN OUR HEARTS AROUND THE GLOBE…

  • 14. Rivky wrote:

    Jews of France in your pain we share,
    All of Klal Yisroel today sheds a tear.
    Your pain and sorrow is too large to comprehend,
    Four funerals in one day to attend.
    May Hashem comfort you in mourning your loved ones,
    to you they were so dear,
    Hamukem yenachem eschem,
    may Hashem give you strength this tragedy to bear.

  • 15. Rivkah Bush wrote:

    OH….what an amazing woman that in her time of such pain she thought to give this gift. May the memory of your husband and children be a blessing. We should all strive to do an additional mitzvoh to honor her.

  • 17. Amazing Woman!! wrote:

    Eva,
    What an amazing woman you must be! We will IY”H invite people to our seder in honor of your husband and children. You are an inspiration to the world – that you even have strength to put pen to paper and write so eloquently at a time when you are so burdened. May Hashem give you the koach to continue on and may you know no further sorrow. Moshiach Now – may you be reunited immediately with your dear husband and precious children.

  • 18. Special mother wrote:

    You are such an inspiration. No one should have to endure such pain. May Hashem give you the strength you need at this most difficult time.

  • 19. Pamela Rae wrote:

    It is hard to type through tears. May the love of Ha’Shem, ha kadosh baruch Hu, and His Mashiach truly comfort and strengthen you in this hour of loss and sorrow. You remain embedded in my heart and in my prayers daily.Just looking at the photgraphs of little Gavriel, Aryeh and Yonatan and you tell me what an extraordinary family beloved by Ha’Shem you all have been. Would that I could have met you and your family long before this unspeakable tragedy. But, thank Ha’Shem, the Divine Presence will bring you through the valley of the shadow of death, overshadowed by the chesed and tikvah that comes through our Mashiach. Eternal shalom always to you.

  • 20. Bonnie Weinreb wrote:

    May Hashem comfort you , your family, and the Monsonego family among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem and may He destroy, obliterate, and erase the enemies of the Jewish people for now and for all time. May you all know only joy and happiness from now on and be comforted in knowing the hearts of all Jews are one with you. Chazak Chazak V’titchazek!

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