Saved From Taxi Road Rage
Chaim, a Crown Heights resident, recalls being in a midnight drag race between two taxi drivers on the way to the airport.
By M. C. Millman
After the recent tragedy of the passing of Reb Shaya Schtroks OBM of Morristown, NJ, a fund has been set up to support the family. A local Shul appealed the cause, collecting funds. One Crown Heights resident gives his account of a life saving story due to the giving of Tzedaka in Shaya's honor:
It was an inspirational appeal, so inspirational in fact that Reb Chaim (full name was changed upon request) felt that he had to do better than his usual check. And once Shabbos was over, he did just that. The check that Reb Chaim wrote out for the widow and twice orphaned children of Rabbi Yeshaye Schtroks Sunday morning, May 6, was one so large that he borrowed from his line of credit to cover it.
The cause of the seven orphans, only two of whom are already married, was enough for him to feel it was the least he could do. Over time, he would be'ezras Hashem be able to repay the loan and in the meantime, the Schtroks could have whatever semblance of peace of mind he could afford to give them. Not satisfied with writing out only his own check, Reb Chaim even contacted a wealthy friend.
"I've never done anything like this before," he explains. "I told my friend that if he had money to give, that this would be a worthy cause, and I'm happy to say that he also gave."
Sunday night, Reb Chaim was on his way to the airport in a taxi when another car cut them off. Enraged, the taxi driver set off in hot pursuit. Going at speeds that neared 100 miles an hour, the two cars drag raced down the highway at midnight, tailgating each other with little space between them in an attempt at intimidation while a petrified Reb Chaim clung to the back seat in horror.
Less than 5 minutes before it had all begun, the taxi hit the concrete barrier on the right, bounced back all the way off and careened to the cement median on the left, only to spin around a few times and end up 180 degrees around, facing the oncoming traffic.
Reb Chaim was in a panic; at any second any of the cars coming up behind could hit the car, but he was unable to open the damaged door on one side and the door on the other was blocked by the cement median.
Finally, he and the taxi driver were able to maneuver the front door open a crack and slip through it. They climbed over the median to the opposite side, where they finally crossed the highway during a lull in traffic and shortly thereafter were taken away in an ambulance.
Reb Chaim suffered only from one small scratch on his hand, but he credits his miraculous escape to only one thing – the check he wrote out for the fund for Rabbi Yeshaye Schtroks' widow and orphans an incredible instance of "tzedakah tatzil mimaves."
"I feel that that Sunday was perhaps supposed to be my last day on earth," Reb Chaim relates, "and that tzedaka had some effect to make it otherwise."
Please help the Schtroks Family, visit: ZichronsShayaSchtroks.com