St. Louis rabbi recalls years of study with Rabbi Twersky

Rabbi Shlomo Soroka, Associate Dean and Executive Director of the St. Louis Kollel, said he studied at Rabbi Mosheh Twersky’s yeshiva for close to four years and the two had been close ever since. 

“After my grandfathers and grandmother, I’ve never lost someone I loved and admired so much,” he wrote in email to the Light on Tuesday. 

In 1996, in Soroka’s second year in Israel, he became Twersky’s student and he studied with him privately and spent “many a Shabbos” with Twersky’s family. They kept in touch and Soroka would visit whenever he returned to Israel.

“He cared for me (and all his students) like a father cares for a child,” said Soroka. 

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“[Rabbi Twersky] was so humble and quiet. He was revered by all the students. It was as if he was the stuff of legends of great Rabbis from hundreds of years ago,” Soroka said. 

“He was so devoted to G-d, yet so devoted to people — and showed how it was all the same,” Soroka said. 

“Yesterday he went to the mikvah before morning prayers, went to shul and wrapped himself in his talis and tefillin. That’s how how was murdered. He died in a state of total spiritual purity. But perhaps more significant was that he lived every moment of his his life in a state of total spiritual purity.”