Yaakov Shlomo Biegeleisen passed away on March 18 as a result of complications due to COVID-19, one of the earlier victims of the rapid spread of the coronavirus in New York.

A familiar face to Jewish-book lovers and scholars, Biegeleisen, along with his brother Moshe, served as the longtime proprietor of the Biegeleisen Seforim Store on 16th Avenue in the Borough Park neighborhood in Brooklyn, N.Y.

The store was founded by their father, Yisroel, on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. A Belzer Chassid, he moved the business to Brooklyn, where it became a mainstay of the community.

Despite the seemingly chaotic set-up of the Brooklyn establishment—with piles of books everywhere, many of them rare finds—its owners were keenly aware of their merchandise. Those with questions as to the location or details of an item could easily approach the owners, whose expertise and knowledge in Torah publications were second to none.

He was predeceased by his son, Shimmy, who was killed in the terror attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001.

Biegeleisen is survived by his wife, Gina; another son, a daughter and their children. He is also survived by his brother.

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