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[Page 215]

Malka Warshavsky

Malka Warshavsky was born in approximately 1869 in Drohitchin to her father, R. Yitzchak Isaac, and her mother, Toive Leah Warshavsky, and was raised as a religious Jewish girl.

In 1886 she married Yaakov Zvi Warshavsky, a son of Mordechai Warshavsky, who was a descendant of R. Dovidel Jaffe. Malka was energetic and clever, and was a woman of valor to her husband, who ran an authentic Jewish home and had time to be involved in community affairs, helping the poor and needy.

In 1906, after a brief illness, Malka's husband, R. Yaakov Zvi, passed away at the age of 39, leaving Malka as a widow with 7 young orphans. Malka took on the role of both father and mother to her children. She opened a food store and took care of her children in the spirit of Judaism.

During the First World War, Malka and her children were in the village of Bilinka (near Drohitchin), where they worked in the fields. At the end of the war, Malka lived through the tragic death of her son, Yisrael Baruch, who moved to the United States in 1911, and was killed as an American soldier on the French front three months before the end of the war. Malka received the news of her son's death directly from the American government. Yisrael Baruch was the only casualty among Drohitchin Jews living in the United States in the First World War.

In 1920, Malka received official permission from the American government to come to the United States, where she settled with her children in Chicago.

In Chicago Malka invested all her energy in community activities. She became involved in assisting new immigrants from Drohitchin who felt lonely and isolated when they came to the United States.

Malka's house was always open for newly arrived immigrants from Drohitchin who found a warm welcome, a kosher meal, a place to sleep, and found in Malka a helping hand as they settled down in the United States.

Malka was particularly devoted to assisting war victims and the needy in Drohitchin who wrote her with requests for assistance. One of the requests was for aid to marry off a daughter; another asked for money to buy a cow; a third asked for food and clothing for orphans; a fourth requested help for patients in the hospital, surgery, etc. Malka helped everyone.

[Photo:] A picture of R. Mordechai Warshavsky (Malka's father-in-law), who died in the 1920s. Mordechai's son, R, Yaakov Zvi Warshavsky (Malka's husband), died in Drohitchin at 39 years of age on 24 Shvat, 1906 [February 19, 1906].

[Page 216]

Malka was particularly involved in assisting new brides. She assisted a large number of poor Jewish girls and orphans in Drohitchin with their wardrobe, outfits and dowries so that they could get married and start a home.

Malka was also an active member of the Kehilath Yaakov synagogue and Jewish elementary school, House of Study and "parochial school," as well as other institutions in Chicago.

There was almost no Jewish institution in the United States and Palestine that didn't appeal to Malka Warshavsky for assistance, and she accommodated all of their requests. Malka had in her possession a bagful of letters and receipts for contributions to dozens of institutions that she supported.

Malka Warshavsky had seven children: Moshe, Shmuel and Meir (killed with their families in Drohitchin); Israel Baruch (killed in World War I); Eliyahu David (killed in a car accident in Chicago); Toive Leah (Tilla) Kagan, Leizer Warshavsky and Yosef Warshaw (living in Chicago).

[Photo:] Sheina Warshavsky-Baum, the daughter of Moshe Shmuel's. She was killed. May G-d avenge her death.

Hershel Chaim, Khasha Levin

[Photo:] Khasha Levin, may G-d avenge her death.

Hershel Chaim and his wife, Khasha "the Bronner lady," as she was known, were rare individuals in Drohitchin. She never had any children, and therefore became involved in helping the children of others. Both Hershel and Khasha had the same view of life, and worked harmoniously for the benefit of the public.

For many years R. Hershel Chaim was the treasurer and head of the Street House
of Study, and spent alot of time and energy on it. As the treasurer of the Sick Fund, he collected money to help the needy, visitors and emissaries from institutions from out of town. He was particularly involved in Torah education for poor children, and supported religious elementary schools, and was one of the main supporters of the local yeshiva that was located at the Street House of Study.

When R. Hershel Chaim would finish his work and get into his Sabbath clothes, everyone knew that he was going to become involved in a charitable act – this occurred almost every other day.

His wife, Khasha, the daughter of R. Moshe Naftali Bronner Walinsky, was born in Drohitchin and acted in the same way as her husband. Even though she didn't appear to be in good health, Malka had a great deal of energy and fire within her. She didn't walk, she ran. She worked and spoke the same way: very quickly, and never had enough time. She was always on the move and was always thinking about the shtetl.

Khasha used to visit the sick in Drohitchin to make sure they didn't lack anything. If it was needed,

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