A tragedy occurred Monday night on Highway 3, near the Beit Chilkiyah Junction, when a bachur, Yosef Yona Rutner, z”l, 15, a talmid in the Belzer Yeshivah L’Tzeirim on the moshav, was struck by a car. He sustained a critical head injury and succumbed to his wounds.
The news quickly spread through the yeshivah, where his friends were horror-stricken.
Yosef Yona was the son of Reb Nachman Rutner, a son of Rabbi Meir Rutner, who is the son of the Rav of Chalisa, Harav Yaakov Ben Tzion Rutner, zt”l. He was named after his grandfather, Reb Yona Yosef Klein, z”l, a well-known Belzer Chassid whose yahrtzeit falls this week.
Yosef Yona was raised in a home imbued with the values of Belzer Chassidus, fulfilling his parents’ hopes and dreams.
He studied in the Belzer cheder in Ashdod, and after his bar mitzvah, entered the yeshivah ketanah in Beit Chilkiyah.
Yosef Yona was in shiur beis in yeshivah, and was beloved by his rebbeim and friends alike. He always had a smile on his face, and strived to follow in the footsteps of his parents and grandparents. He was an ardent Chassid of the Belzer Rebbe, shlita, and all predicted that he would grow up to be a talmid chacham and yiras Shamayim.
But it was ordained otherwise, and while the Chassidim waited in the Belzer beis medrash for the Rebbe to light the menorah, news of the accident became known.
After lighting his menorah at the yeshivah, the bachur had left to travel to a family gathering in Beit Shemesh. Right after he walked out of the yeshivah, he began to cross the intersection at the entrance to Beit Chilkiyah, where he was struck by a speeding car. He succumbed to his injuries at the scene.
The levayah is scheduled to take place today, Tuesday.