“My great great great grandfathers ultimate wish was to one day visit Israel. He lived until 94 but never fulfilled his life long dream.”

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“Last summer I went to Israel and prayed at the Kotel with his siddur and in some way I helped fulfill it for him. G-d truly works wonders.

My name is Menachem Mendal Krashunsky. I’m 18 years old I had my Bar Mitzvah 5 years ago, but it was not until my first visit to Israel that I felt the importance of Judaism in my life. I felt that I wanted to be more involved in study and practice of my religion. I fell in love with Israel the first day of my visit. I felt at home right away not even speaking a word of Hebrew. I was amazed and proud of every Israeli who contributed to developing our small holy land in such a beautiful and great country.

When I came back to Los Angeles I decided to learn more about Judaism. Rabbi Moshe Levin a Chabad Rabbi taught me how to put on Tefillin. The following week in my local synagogue I had a Hebrew naming ceremony. Rabbi Levin and I chose the name Menachem Mendal. Two weeks later I heard an amazing story from my great Grandmother, a Holocaust survivor. She told me that her grandfather was a Hasidic Jew and his name was also Menachem Mendal. I had no idea!

Two weeks later my great grandmother receives a call from her cousin in Canada who tells her that they found her grandfathers siddur and talit that he used every single day. My great grandmother told her the story of me taking on his same name and they decided to ship it out to Los Angeles so that I should have it. I felt so blessed that this happened I couldn’t believe it when my great grandmother told me “This is not some coincidence this is all G-d’s work he wanted you to have his name and his 121 year old Siddur and tallit, we are very blessed”.

He was the last person in our family so dedicated to religion and I feel very happy that I am able to continue his practices and Torah studying and pass it to my kids and grandkids just like my Great great great grandfather would want us to.”