Rebbetzin Miriam Horowitz was born 87 years ago to her illustrious parents, Harav Duvid and Rebbetzin Riva Malka Halberstam, Rav and Rebbetzin of Kashaniov. Riva Malka was the daughter of the Altztadter Rav, Harav Chaim Yitzchak Jeruchim, mechaber of sefer Birchas Chaim.
Miriam, sister to three older brothers, was her parents’ youngest child. All her life she excelled at the mitzvah of kibbud av va’eim.
The Halberstam family left Poland to escape its harsh political climate, settling in Vienna. After the outbreak of World War II, realizing that it was unsafe to remain in Europe, they sought a way out, finally escaping to America in 1941.
The family settled in Williamsburg, where Miriam became one of the first students of Rebbetzin Vichna Kaplan’s, a”h, Bais Yaakov High School. Her love and respect for Rebbetzin Kaplan were tremendous, and she felt fortunate to establish a warm relationship with her illustrious menaheles and teacher.
Rebbetzin Kaplan asked her to speak at a certain school event. When she expressed hesitation, unused to playing that role, the Rebbetzin encouraged her, “Miriam, du vest redden.” And she did, rising to the occasion regally. The Rebbetzin obviously knew the potential of her dear talmidah and where her talents could take her in the future.
Rebbetzin Kaplan encouraged her talmidos to enter the field of chinuch and educate the next generation al taharas hakodesh. Miriam followed that directive and traveled each day to and from the Bronx, where she taught in the neighborhood Bais Yaakov. Her talmidos of that era still tell their beloved teacher’s children that their mother was their role model.
Miriam married a great and distinguished talmid chacham, Harav Yechezkel Horowitz, zy”a; together they raised a wonderful family of, ybl”c, eight children. Rav Horowitz established and led the Sanzer Kloiz in Monsey, as its revered Mara d’Asra. His wife filled her role as Rebbetzin with the graciousness and kindness that were her hallmarks. She possessed a true ayin tovah, avoiding judgment of others, seeing the good and speaking of the good. The community loved and looked up to her.
Thirty-four years ago, the Horowitz family moved to Boro Park, where the Rav had accepted the position of Dayan of Kahal Adas Yereim of Vien. He dedicatedly served his kehillah, his ezer k’negdo faithfully at his side, until his petirah at age 64. During his illness, Rebbetzin Miriam attended to him devotedly, doing whatever she could for her husband’s comfort and wellbeing.
The Rebbetzin then became a social worker at Laconia Nursing Home. She was known for the meticulous way she fulfilled her duties, as well as the warmth she extended toward the patients and their families. Dynamic and energetic, she avidly did her job until this past fall.
These qualities manifested themselves most strongly in the magnificent way she nurtured and related to her family. She was a warm, loving and giving mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Her daughter-in-law affirmed that the Rebbetzin always related to her with positivity, praise and encouragement. “Never did I feel criticized in any way.”
She was a woman of noble bearing and comportment, a high level of tznius reflected in her dress and her actions.
Rebbetzin Horowitz greeted people with sever panim yafos, kvod habriyos, and genuine interest in their welfare.
She was a selfless person who was always doing kind things for others. Her hakaras hatov to anyone who did any sort of favor for her was tremendous. She davened three times a day, and had the needs of Klal Yisrael, b’chlal and b’frat, in mind in her tefillos. On the morning of her petirah, she davened Hallel with concentration. And then her glorious neshamah passed on from this world into the olam ha’emes.
Rebbetzin Horowitz is survived by, ybl”c, her esteemed sons, Harav Elisha, Harav Baruch Avraham, Harav Nusen Naftali, and Harav Yosef, her daughters, Mrs. Sheindy Geldzahler, Mrs. Breindy Halberstam, Mrs Tzipora Rochel Breisch, Mrs. Chaya Blima Bluming; and grandchildren and great-grandchildren, ken yirbu, who follow the shining path of their great ancestors.
Yehi zichrah baruch.