This past Sunday, August 21, under a beautiful sky in the heart of Main Street in Kew Gardens Hills, surrounded by family, friends, and community members, the Besalel family had the z’chus of celebrating and welcoming a new sefer Torah dedicated in memory of their dear uncle, Shlomo Chaim Betzalel z”l.

Born in Afghanistan and raised in Eretz Yisrael, Uncle Shlomo, as he was affectionately known, was the sweetest, kindest, and most brilliant man, according to his loved ones.   Shlomo’s deep love for the Torah and its cherished values, Jewish history, and art continues to inspire family members and friends worldwide.

His family recognized their uncle as a man who was distinguished by his fine midos and was loved by all.

The Torah completion was held at the 70th Road home of Eliaho and Ziva Besalel, and continued with a festive procession that snaked throughout the neighborhood, attracting all walks of life to partake in the mitzvah.   Beginning up 70th Road to 150th Street/Rabbi Fabian Schonfeld Way, the entourage paraded with a stunning crowned music truck to 73rd Avenue, then down to Main Street, and up Vleigh Place back to 70th Road, where the new sefer Torah was met by those housed at Shuva Israel of Queens, where the new scroll was dedicated.   Shuva Israel, under the leadership of Rabbi Shimon Sadon, emulates Uncle Shlomo’s love for Torah, and his desire for peace and unity.

Appreciation is extended to the NYPD 107th police officers and Queens Borough Safety Patrol Shmira volunteers for ensuring safety and security throughout the route.

 By Shabsie Saphirstein, with the Besalel family