Daily Israel Report

Tragedy in Uman: Israeli Killed in Holiday Accident

A young Israeli man was swept away by a river and drowned during "tashlich" prayer, while spending Rosh Hashanah at Uman.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 10/1/2011, 11:07 PM

A young Israeli man died in Uman, Ukraine on Thursday. The youth, who has not yet been identified, was swept away by a river.

A ZAKA volunteer in Uman, Shimi Grossman, told Arutz Sheva that the tragedy occurred as a group of men belonging to the Breslov Chassidic sect performed the “tashlich” ritual, in which Jews stand near a body of water and symbolically cast their sins into the water as part of the period of atonement leading up to Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.

The youth immersed himself completely in the waters as if at a ritual bath. When he did not resurface, his companions made many efforts to retrieve him, but were unsuccessful.

Some ran for help, and managed to find a former professional diver who was also in Uman for the holiday. The diver found the young man, but attempts to resuscitate him were not successful.

Breslov chassidim gathered around the body and recited tehillim (Psalms) around the clock until after the Sabbath, when they began to transport the body to Israel for burial as quickly as possible.