The days before Pesach coincide with first yartzeit of HaGaon Harav Aharon Walkin, ztk”l. Over the past year, much has been shared of Rebbe’s life, as his legacy has been established. A weekly Torah pamphlet, a dedicated portal for Torah thoughts and inspiration, and a food pantry are just a couple measures taken to date. This past Monday evening, March 22, the Rav’s sons, talmidim, and those closest to the Rosh HaYeshiva gathered at Simcha Palace for a Siyum HaShas of monumental significance.
Rabbi Yaniv Meirov, CEO of Chazaq, a talmid of the Rav for a decade and a half, offered opening remarks to pay tribute to a giant who guided so many. “We gather here to learn from the life of the Rosh HaYeshiva how to live our lives and of the importance of the Torah and taking our community to the next level.” Meirov recounted that following the siyum daf yomi, he took it upon himself to begin the daf cycle with his Rebbe. One of the last major events and appearances for the Rosh HaYeshiva prior to the pandemic was a siyum on Brachos. “This tradition carried into the pandemic and for the first time I will join in making a siyum, as it has been too difficult for me until now.”
Following the Rav’s shloshim, the brothers chose to undertake making this siyum that spread throughout Queens and the Rav’s kehillah in Lakewood, New Jersey. The Rav’s son Pinchas was surrounded by his brothers Yitzchak, Shlomo, Naftoli, Baruch Ber, and Yisrael Meir, who together recited the hadran and kaddish.
By Shabsie Saphirstein