Thousands of disciples attended final rites yesterday for Rabbi Joseph Grunwald, a Holocaust survivor who died Saturday at a Westchester medical center at the age of 81, after suffering a stroke.
Grunwald was president of the Rabbinical Congress of the United States and Canada in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, a center of the Satmar Hasidic movement. But a source there told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that while Grunwald had served as president of the Congress, he was in fact founder and head of the Pupa Hasidic movement which he bult into a worldwide movement of some 100,000 members, and not a Satmar Hasid.
Some 2,000 mourners gathered outside the rabbi’s home in Brooklyn early yesterday. A spokesperson for the Yeshivath Kehilath Yakov sect, also called the Pupa Hasidim after a town in Hungary with which the Grunwalds had historically been associated, said thousand of mourners had paid their last respects to Grunwald.
He survived a death camp where his wife and 10 children perished. He emigrated from Pupa after World War II, coming to the United States where he created orphanages and schools for other refugees from Pupa. His son Jacob is expected, in the dynastic manner of Hasidic groups, to succeed him as Pupa Rebbe.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.