SYDNEY (JTA) – A Holocaust survivor from New York state was killed in a traffic accident while visiting Australia.
Yitzchok Rotenberg, 71, from New Square, N.Y., died after he was hit by a motorcycle in Melbourne on Wednesday night as he was leaving evening prayer services at Adass Israel Synagogue. He was taken to the Alfred Hospital, according to media reports, and died on Thursday morning.
Rotenberg was visiting his son, daughter-in-law and grandchildren. His body was flown back to New York for burial on Friday.
A spokesman for the Adass Israel Synagogue, Andrew Abelesz, told The Age newspaper: "We’re very saddened, we’re extremely saddened. A man comes to visit from America and goes in such a tragic way, it’s very painful for the whole community."
Members of Hatzolah, the Jewish volunteer paramedics, were the first to arrive on scene, The Age reported. Rotenberg apparently had stepped into the path of an oncoming motorcyclist, according to police.
Rotenberg, who was a member of the Skver sect of fervent Orthodoxy, was spared an autopsy, in keeping with Jewish law, following extended efforts by the local chevra kadisha.