Reb Eliezer (Lazer) Dovid Hoffman, z”l, long-time gabbai of the previous Skverer Rebbe of Boro Park and noted baal chessed, was niftar on Tuesday Rosh Chodesh Nisan. He was 70 years old.
“He was dedicated with his heart and soul to the Rebbe and to all those who came to him for help,” said one long-time friend. “Reb Lazer Dovid was a natural ish hachessed and spent his life running to do tovos for people.”
Reb Lazer Dovid was born in 1947 in the displaced persons camp at Feldafing, in Germany. The family had been active members of the prominent kehillah of Pupa, Hungary, before World War II. In 1949, the Hoffmans emigrated to America and settled in Williamsburg.
Reb Lazer Dovid’s father, Reb Moshe Hoffman, was a widely-known askan who was the founder of Shomrim and a leading member of the Pupa chevrah kaddisha. His mother, Mrs. Roiza Hoffman, a”h, led the Pupa Bikur Cholim society. The family’s dedication to Klal Yisrael made an indelible impression on young Lazer Dovid, who would become widely known for his own many acts of kindness.
He studied in Yeshivas Pupa and later in the Tosher Yeshivah outside Montreal. Reb Lazer Dovid married, tbl”c, Draizel Mermelstein, the daughter of Reb Chaim Nochum, z”l, and Ettel Mermelstein, a”h.
As a young man, Reb Lazer Dovid became an increasingly regular presence in the court of the Skverer Rebbe of Boro Park, Harav Dovid Twersky, zy”a, eventually becoming his main gabbai, a position he served in for decades. In his demanding daily routine, tischen, tefillos and other functions, it was Reb Lazer Dovid who stood by the Rebbe’s side, tending to his every need. He spent long nights writing kvitlach and managing the Rebbe’s rigorous schedule. He was also a beloved baal tefillah, leading davening on Yamim Nora’im and other occasions.
As gabbai, Reb Lazer Dovid was an integral part of the Rebbe’s tireless efforts to help the many Jews who came to him, especially with medical referrals. Reb Lazar Dovid spent countless hours on the phone researching qualified specialists and making appointments, in addition to paying frequent visits to hospitals to perform bikur cholim and check up on patients who had been advised by the Rebbe.
The Rebbe himself once commented that he “envied Reb Lazer Dovid’s olam haba” for his efforts on behalf of his fellow Jews.
Even long after the Rebbe’s passing, Reb Lazer Dovid remained heavily involved in bikur cholim efforts, spending much of his time in Mt. Sinai, Lenox Hill and other New York-area hospitals, visiting and advising patients. He also worked closely with, yblc”t, the Munkatcher Rebbe, shlita, in his efforts for pidyon shevuyim.
In recent years, Reb Lazer Dovid became increasingly involved in the Rachmastrivka kehillah in Boro Park, going to great efforts to help its rapidly growing mosdos, offering his assistance in any way he could.
The levayah took place Tuesday afternoon at the Rachmastrivka Beis Medrash, continuing on to the Skverer Beis Medrash, then traveling to Kiryas Pupa in Ossining, New York, for kevurah.
He is survived by his wife, Mrs. Draizel Hoffman; daughters, Mrs. Sarah Yitta Gross, Mrs. Rochel Stein, Mrs. Hencha Neuhaus, Mrs. Nechama Feiga Rosenberg, Mrs. Mirel Leifer and Mrs. Rivka Braun; as well as by many grandchildren.
Yehi zichro baruch.