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Chapter two

החופה של אפרים רימל

Translation by Yehoshua Siskin

Last night, Yael Shevach, who lost her husband in a terrorist attack, wrote me the following:

"This is the season for weddings, and I have just returned from a wedding -- but unlike any I had ever attended. Ephraim Rimel lost his wife Tzipi and his little girl three years ago in an accident caused by a Palestinian who was driving at an excessive rate of speed on Highway 443. Ephraim was left paralyzed from the waist down. Ayelet Coleman lost her husband Adiel in a terrorist attack. Those are the two people who were married tonight.

Under the chuppah, Ayelet sat on a chair because Ephraim is confined to a wheelchair. She simply sat next to him throughout the ceremony, and that said so much. A multitude of friends and family had gathered to dance in their honor. It was amazing to me to see that so many members of the extended families of Adiel z"l and Tzipi z"l had come, happy to share in the couple's happiness.

The evening was a continuous mixture of crying and rejoicing, an evening of a keenly felt attachment between this world and the next. When two people widowed by such tragic and painful circumstances come together, it is a cry to God. They are beginning the next chapter, chapter two, despite all they have endured. They decided to do the best they could do with the worst that could have happened to them. To collect the pieces, to shake off the sadness. Indeed, neither of them had wanted to end up as they did, and yet they were determined to go forward together. I looked at them and asked: 'The Holy One, blessed be He, what about the second chapter for us, the nation of Israel, after everything we have endured?'

I returned home full of newfound strength. If only the unique energy generated by this wedding could enter the life of everyone who reads about it.."


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