Naphtali Lau Lavie Passes Away


naphtali-lau-lavieNaphtali Lau Lavie, brother of former Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel Rav Yisrael Meir Lau, passed away on Shabbos.

The levaya and kevurah were held today on Har Hamenuchos.

He was 88.

Lau was born in Krakow, Poland in 1926. His father, Rav Moshe Chaim Lau, was the rov of the city of Pietrikov, Poland, a scion of a family of rabbonim for generations. He spent his first years in Romania, then Slovakia and Poland.

During World War II, the Lau family was sent to the Pietrikov Ghetto in Poland. In 1941, at age 15, he was kidnapped and sent to Auschwitz.

Rav Moshe Chaim was murdered in Treblinka. His mother, Chaya, was murdered in Ravensbruck. His younger brother, Shmuel, was also murdered by the Nazis.

Naphtali and his brother, Rav Yisroel Meir, were sent to the Hortensia and Czestochowa concentration camps. In early 1945, they were transferred to Buchenwald. In October 1945, they immigrated to Eretz Yisroel, having survived the Holocaust inb miraculous fashion.

Naphtali, who lived mostly in Ramat Gan, served as a reporter for Haaretz, an adviser to Moshe Dayan, defense ministry spokesperson, and general consul in New York in 1981.

He is survived by his wife, Joan, four children, and grandchildren.

{ Israel News Bureau}


  1. If u read Rav Lau’s book it was his brother who was entrusted by their father to make sure that his younger brother stay alive during world war 2. And he was literally moser nefesh for his brother’s life as his was the only child to survive buchenwald mostly because of Naftali

  2. Boruch Dayan HoEmes

    Naphtali was a great statesman and above all a great gentleman and nobleman. He would listen to anybody and everybody who needed help, and do for others and not waiting for the “thank you”. I can attest he did favors and never looking back, just looking forward trying just to help others. Also he was a great family man, being in his company you had the greatest feeling, and as some would call “Uncle Naphtali” in hebrew was the most sweetest expression.

  3. R’ Naftalie Lau was moser nefesh many times to save his little brother Rav Yisrael Meir lau, and looked after him during his formative years. He also used his many talents to further the cause of his brothers in Erets Yisrael.May his many great zechuyos give a great aliya to his neshama, which will surely bask in the great Radiance of the Shchina.