10 Rabbis, 10 Ice Bucket Challenges, 1 Wedding

by Natalie Jacobs September 11, 2014


This summer, after a brutal barrage of bad news – from war in Gaza to Ebola in Africa – the world turned their attentions to brighter stories found on Facebook walls and YouTube videos. The Ice Bucket Challenge was a unique fundraising campaign of unknown origins. The plan was simple: film yourself dumping a bucket of ice over your head, post it on your social media channels, nominate your friends. If you denied the challenge you had to donate $100 to the ALS Association. Apparently a lot of people subscribe to the honor system, because as of Sept. 11, the ALS Association $1.2 million had been raised.

For 10 Chabad rabbis from San Diego, the cause is something very close to their hearts. A little more than a year ago, Rabbi Yitzi Hurwitz, formerly of Chabad Temecula, was diagnosed with a severe form of ALS, known as bulbar onset. We shared the news in June 2013 in a particularly heart-wrenching story that you can read it here. Rabbi Hurwitz is now wheelchair bound, but he can still be caught in good spirits. A few months ago, at the height of the Ice Bucket Challenge, a wedding was held at the Chabad Hebrew Academy campus. Familiar with both the chain video and Rabbi Hurwitz’s ongoing struggle, Dr. Larry Herring suggested that Rabbi Fradkin, head of Chabad of San Diego, accept the challenge.

“You get me 10 buckets of ice water and I’ll get you 10 rabbis,” Fradkin responded. So Herring got to work recruiting rabbis to dump buckets of ice water on their heads at the Dinerman/Kreiman wedding. The result is one of the most inspiring Ice Bucket Challenge videos that we’ve seen through the whole ordeal. Watch the video below, and notice Rabbi Hurtwitz staring on with his classic smile.


After watching the video, learn more about Rabbi Hurtwitz’s condition and consider donating to his family through their fund here: www.hurwitzfamilyfund.com


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