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In the midst of her mourning, the widow and mother of three of the victims of the attack on the Ozar Hatorah high school issues a heartfelt call for people around the world to carry on the memory of those whose lives were cut short.

Massacre in Toulouse

Massacre in Toulouse

A Call From the Heart by Mrs. Eva Sandler

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A Heartfelt Plea for Increased Light by Mrs. Chava (Eva) Sandler of Toulouse

My heart is broken. I am unable to speak. There are no ways for me to be able to express the great and all-consuming pain resulting from the murder of my dear husband Rabbi Jonathan and our sons, Aryeh and Gavriel, and of Miriam Monsonego, daughter of the dedicated principal of Ozar Hatorah and his wife, Rabbi Yaakov and Mrs. Monsonego.

May no one ever have to endure such pain and suffering.

The spirit of the Jewish people can never be extinguished

Because so many of you, my cherished brothers and sisters in France and around the world, are asking what you can do on my behalf, on behalf of my daughter Liora and on behalf of the souls of my dear husband and children, I feel that, difficult though it may be, it is incumbent upon me to answer your entreaties.

My husband’s life was dedicated to teaching Torah. We moved back to the country of his birth to help young people learn about the beauty of Torah. He was truly a good man, loving, giving, and selfless. He was sensitive to all of G‑d’s creatures, always searching for ways to reveal the goodness in others.

He and I raised Aryeh and Gavriel to live the ways of Torah. Who would have known how short would be their time on this Earth, how short would be the time I would be with them as their mother?

I don’t know how I and my husband’s parents and sister will find the consolation and strength to carry on, but I know that the ways of G‑d are good, and He will reveal the path and give us the strength to continue. I know that their holy souls will remain with us forever, and I know that very soon the time will come when we will be together again with the coming of Moshiach.

Please invite another person into your homes so that all have a place at a Seder to celebrate the holiday of our freedom.

I wholeheartedly believe in the words of the verse: “The L-ord has given, and the L-ord has taken away; blessed be the Name of the L-ord.” I thank the Almighty for the privilege, short though it was, of raising my children together with my husband. Now the Almighty wants them back with Him.

To all those who wish to bring consolation to our family and contentment to the souls of the departed: Let’s continue their lives on this Earth.

Parents, please kiss your children. Tell them how much you love them, and how dear it is to your heart that they be living examples of our Torah, imbued with the fear of Heaven and with love of their fellow man.

Please increase your study of Torah, whether on your own or with your family and friends. Help others who may find study difficult to achieve alone.

Please bring more light into the world by kindling the Sabbath candles this and every Friday night. (Please do so a bit earlier than the published times as a way to add holiness to our world.)

The holiday of Passover is approaching. Please invite another person into your homes so that all have a place at a Seder to celebrate the holiday of our freedom.

Please bring more light into the world by kindling the Sabbath candles this and every Friday night.

Along with our tearful remembrance of our trials in Egypt so many years ago, we still tell over how “in each and every generation, they have stood against us to destroy us.” We all will announce in a loud and clear voice: “G‑d saves us from their hands.”

The spirit of the Jewish people can never be extinguished; its connection with Torah and its commandments can never be destroyed.

May it be G‑d’s will that from this moment on, we will all only know happiness.

I send my heartfelt condolences to the Monsonego family for the loss of their daughter Miriam, and I pray for the speedy recovery of Aharon ben Leah, who was injured in the attack.

Thank you for your support and love.

Chava (Eva) Sandler

Editor's Note: Please say a prayer for Aron ben Leah, who was injured in the attack.

Video: Watch an interview with Mrs. Eva Sandler

Finding Our Voice
While they mourn, we must speak for them. We must let the world know that we are not going anywhere, and our voices will only get louder the more others try to quiet us . . .
An Interview with Eva Sandler
Mrs. Eva Sandler gives a video interview following the terror attack in Toulouse, France which claimed the lives of her husband, two sons, and one other girl.
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rivka bitton Ashdod Israel September 7, 2014

Dearest eva
You do not know me but I know and think about you each and every day many many times in the last 2and a half years.
I have been blessed with a beautiful child born on the 18 03 2012 named after someone dear to you Yonatan ,may this be a small comfort in difficult moments and may Hashem alleviate all suffering and bring moshiach soon.Amen
If you would like to see his photo I would gladly send it to you by email
R.Bitton Reply

Amichai Schneller rage town MN. March 19, 2014

this world sucks. G-d? or no G-d. Ok, that's it. Reply

rachid. June 28, 2012

I don't know what to say I see what happened to You and to the people you love, and I just dont know what to say but
Tears are not enough.... Reply

Anonymous Boca Raton, Florida May 22, 2012

Every Shabbat I light candles early and I say the names of these innocent victims out loud. I will never forget. This has affected me profoundly. Reply

Malka LA, CA April 23, 2012

Mrs. Sandler I give tzedakah every day in memory of your children, husband and little Miriam OBM. I was able to figure out the Hebrew names of the children, but what is your husband's Hebrew name, Yonatan Ben ?
Sorry to trouble you, if you do read this, but I would like to say the right name when giving tzedakah.
May Hashem bless you and give you much strength. Much love to you, Malka Reply

GILBERTO ROSALES SELIGMAN PASTO, COLOMBIA April 3, 2012

MASACRE EN TOLOUSE SEÑORA SANDLER.
ADMIRO SU BONDAD INFINITA Y SU PAZ INTERIOR PARA SOPORTAR UNA TRAGEDIA TAN GRANDE, LA INMENSIDAD DE D-OS ES AÚN MAS GRANDE PARA TRAERLE A USTED UN POCO DE TRANQUILIDAD. HE VIVIDO TAMBIÉN EN CARNE PROPIA LA PÉRDIDA REPENTINA DE SERES QUERIDOS POR CULPA DEL TERRORISMO Y ES MUY, MUY DURO.
SUS NIÑOS Y SU ESPOSO ESTÁN GOZANDO EN PRESENCIA DE D-OS... Reply

Jack Bookham, UK April 3, 2012

Rebbetzin Sandler Rebbetzin Sandler,
I am a Goyim, but I have a deep love for the Jewish people. I am so sorry for your loss, I look at your baby's and I weep, I look at the other's murdered and I weep. I read these things and I burn with anger against the perpetrators. I don't know why so many people hate the Jewish people, but know this, the Jewish nation is Adonai's chosen, and that's something no one can ever take away from you,
May Adonai Bless and comfort you Rebbetzin Sandler.....Jack. Reply

Harriet Srour Delray Beach, FL April 2, 2012

Heartbroken As a mother of 3 I often think what I would do if I lost 1 of my children (G-d forbid). There are no words that I can give to you to make your healing easier, except that I am having 16 people the first night & 15 the second nite at our Seder Table. The 2 nights will proceed as usual with the exception of a moment in silence in the memory of your husband & 2 sons. May G-d give you the strength to deal with your losses. Reply

Anonymous London, U.K. via chabadbloomsbury.org April 1, 2012

A brave and loyal wife and mother..... I just celebrated my 72nd birthday and have been grieving for the last two years for the awful loss of my darling husband of 43 years. My whole being aches for you dear Eva, to lose a good man and father seems too much to bear but to also lose those very innocent boys is unforgettable. Be strong to revere their memory. We are made of strong stuff, we women who seem to be the mortar of Jewish life must never come unglued. All those who were lost in Toulouse are a symbol of what horror exists in the world ! The ignorant, weak and heartless people who took them from their families and community will never find reward either in this or any future life to come. Reply

jose J. Lizarraga los Angeles Ca, USA March 29, 2012

Toulouse The letter from the devoted mother and wife broke my hearth, and give a a shine sparks to all the world I'm not jew but I understand the feelings and I keep in my prays to G-Dto end the hate and forgive us because in certain ways we ere responsible for, G-D have some ways to test us against all matters I feel sos sorry for your pain, and my hearth like your are broken Reply

Diane I Goldberg Nyack, NY-USA via chabadjec.org March 28, 2012

Mon coeur est avec VOUS Votre tragedie me touche profondement. Reply

Anonymous Boca Raton, Florida via shaloh.org March 28, 2012

You are in our hearts I have been paralyzed with sadness and sorrow since I heard. And it is from you that I found strength. I will never forget your husband, children and Miriam. I am so terribly sorry and angry that this happened. Thank you for your message of incredible courage. Reply

Carl Boca Raton, Fl via shaloh.org March 27, 2012

My heart is broken for you I have passed on your message to everyone I see and told them of this terrible loss. We mourn with you. To the Jews, our children are sacred and this is a terrible blow. Your boy's sweet faces, as well as myriad and your husband are always on my mind. I am changed from this and in awe of your strength and kindness. I cry when I am alone and I feel so much pain. I hold on to my children more. I am so sorry for your loss. Reply

The Sitruk family from NYC New York, NY March 27, 2012

Thinking of you Dearest Mrs.Sandler,

Just a few words to tell you that we really think of you,your daughter Liora and the Mansonego family! We are really touched by this beautiful and inspirational letter you put together! You're words are very meaningful. We really think of you and wish you the best in life! We are sure that your dear husband and beautiful children are watching over you and your daughter! We think of you and support you! May you along with the rest of the community only hear good news from now on. All the best! Reply

Anonymous Toronto, Ontario March 27, 2012

The pain I feel.... Is nothing. Nothing at all.

About me: I am a 31 year old man in Canada, modern orthodox. I never cry, ever. I am affected but am not quick to shed tears. I've been affected by murder, specifically my uncle 10 years ago, murdered because he looked jewish. I see my aunt still suffering, still utterly devoted, and it hurts. But she has her children to give her comfort.

My Rabbi spoke about what happened in Toulouse during his drasha on Shabbos. He had trouble maintaining his composure. I almost broke down during Mussaf and had to leave right after I finished to find somewhere private to compose myself. Many tears rolled down my cheeks. I cannot comprehend. It doesn't make sense. A good woman, an eishes chayil, someone on a level high above me......

There is nothing to say, except that a 31 year old man in Canada left shul because he could not hold back tears because his sister in Toulouse is in pain. Reply

Shelley Kaplan Alexandria, LA via jewishbellaire.com March 27, 2012

Our prayers are with you and your family My heart is broken for you and your family. I am grateful for you sharing that amazing letter of love and faith at a time like this. I shared your letter at our youth group Shabbat dinner, and we lit candles earlier in your family's honor. May G-d give you strength to deal with thie awful tragedy. We send you our best wishes for good health and continued healing. Reply

Jeanette, Malcolm, David & Rosalie Prever Hertfordshire & Kfar Adummim, UK & Israel March 27, 2012

Rebbetzin Sandler The thoughts and sympathies of my whole family both here in the UK and in Israel are with you. Your strength and courage are an inspiration to us all. Reply

Isabelle Cohen Johnson, de France Portland, USA March 26, 2012

Ils ne seront pas oubliés ♥ Dear Rebbetzin Sandler,

J'admire votre force et je prie pour que vous trouviez la force de surmonter cette atrocité.

Zichrona l'vracha - may Jonathan, Gavriel Aryeh and Miriam's memory be for a blessing. Ils ne seront pas oubliés ♥ Reply

Vicki Keller St louis , Mo, usa March 26, 2012

My prayers are with you Dear friends, please know that I am praying for you. I will listen to you and tell my family that I love them, more often than I do now....and I do tell them a lot. May your heart know peace and the love only He can give. Reply

Lorraine Wexler Isaac London, United Kingdom via jewishriverside.com March 26, 2012

We share your pain Dear Rebebetzin Sandler
Your bravery and faith are beyond words. May all our people be as strong and loving, as yourself.
Your husband and children were so precious to you, and you were blessed with their goodness.
May G-d be with you and continue to give you the courage to face each day.
Your husband too was blessed in that you shared the short time with him.
We share your pain as well as the Mansonego's family.
We wish you long life, and May G-d make his face to shine upon you and your husband's family.

Reply