Rabbi Yehuda Kelemer, 70, a prominent figure in the West Hempstead Jewish community in Long Island, New York was seriously injured Monday night in a hit-and-run accident just outside of his synagogue.
The incident occurred at approximately 7:35 p.m. local time on Monday, as Rabbi Kelemer was crossing the street on Hempstead Avenue, just across the street from his congregation at the Young Israel of West Hempstead.
A Nassau County Police Department spokesperson said authorities were searching for the driver, who drove off after hitting Rabbi Kelemer. Police say an early 2000s model white Dodge Ram pickup truck was involved in the accident and called for people to report the sight of a car filling that description, especially if the front was dented.
Rabbi Kelemer was evacuated to Winthrop Hospital in Mineola, where he is in serious but stable condition.
Having served as the rabbi of the West Hempstead Young Israel for 33 years, Rabbi Kelemer has become a well-known and oft-cited halakhic source for the greater Long Island community. He had just heard of the birth of a great-grandchild.
Family members and community leaders have requested the public pray on behalf of Yehuda ben Rivka Leah.