The Far Rockaway community was saddened by the news of the petirah of Theodore (Teddy) Schiffman, z”l, who was struck by a car and killed this past Shabbos. He was remembered as one of the early builders of the community. He was 82 years old.
Mr. Schiffman was a long-time member of the board of Congregation Knesseth Israel (the White Shul). While running a successful business, he dedicated great time and efforts to building the kehillah, which remains a central pillar of the Far Rockaway and Lawrence community. In 1978, he played a key role in a merger between two smaller institutions that combined to form the Hebrew Academy of Five Towns and Far Rockaway (HAFTR), which remains one of the area’s major Jewish day schools.
A few years ago, Mr. Schiffman and his wife, Miriam, tbl”c, retired to Boca Raton, Florida. They were in New York on a visit and chose to spend Shabbos specifically in Lawrence, rather than with their children in nearby Woodmere, so that they could daven in the White shul.
“He was a very sharp and selfless person who worked very hard to make the community what it is today, said Harav Eytan Feiner, Rav of Congregation Knesseth Israel. “Every bit of Torah that’s learned in the White Shul is in his zechus.”
Rabbi Boruch Ber Bender, director of the Far Rockaway/Five Towns-based Achiezer Community Resource Center, told Hamodia, “A few of the maspidim mentioned that the hashgachah Elyonah was such that he had to be niftar near the beloved shul that he had done so much to build.”
Friday night, Mr. Schiffman was on his way from shul with a friend, when he was struck by a car while crossing Route 878, near the intersection at Broadway. Hatzolah responded immediately and transported him to St. John’s Hospital, but all resuscitation efforts were unsuccessful. Volunteers from Achiezer were able to provide for proper kvod hameis, and a rotation of bachurim from the nearby Yeshivah Darchei Torah provided shemirah throughout Shabbos. Police concluded that the incident was accidental.
The levayah was held Sunday afternoon at the White Shul. In honor of his work for the institution, the procession also passed by HAFTR en route to the kevurah.
He is survived by, ybl”c, his wife, Miriam Schiffman, several children and many grandchildren.
Yehi zichro baruch.