Rabbi raises thou­sands for killed shop­keeper

The Jewish Chronicle - - NEWS - BY BEN WE­ICH

A RABBI has raised thou­sands of pounds to sup­port the fam­ily of a man who was killed af­ter be­ing at­tacked in in his store.

Vi­jay Pa­tel, a 49-year-old fa­ther-oftwo, was serv­ing in the Rota Ex­press gro­cery in Mill Hill Broad­way, North­West Lon­don, last Satur­day, when he suf­fered a fatal in­jury.

He died in hospi­tal on Mon­day af­ter­noon.

The Metropoli­tan Po­lice said a 16-year-old has been charged on sus­pi­cion of mur­der.

A Just­Giv­ing page set up on Tues­day by Rabbi Yitzchak Scho­chet, the min­is­ter of Mill Hill Syn­a­gogue, raised more than £15,500 in 24 hours. The page’s ini­tial tar­get sum was £1,000.

Rabbi Scho­chet wrote on the crowd­fund­ing site: “As the Mill Hill Jewish com­mu­nity it is ap­pro­pri­ate that we demon­strate com­pas­sion for some­thing so tragic that hap­pened in our im­me­di­ate neigh­bour­hood.”

He told the JC: “I think it’s in­grained in my psy­che, es­pe­cially as a Chabad Rabbi, when there is cri­sis in the com­mu­nity, not uniquely to the Jewish com­mu­nity, there is a com­pelling need to re­spond. Mill Hill is a very di­verse but equally close-knit com­mu­nity and when some­thing strikes one of us, it af­fects all of us.”

The re­sponse from his con­gre­ga­tion had been “in­cred­i­ble”, he said. “Ev­ery­body felt the shock of what hap­pened on their doorstep and when the ap­peal went out, there was this over­whelm­ing re­sponse.” Rabbi Scho­chet said he had vis­ited Mr Pa­tel’s shop “many Vi­jay Pa­tel; Rabbi Scho­chet times over the years and I in­ter­acted with him on many oc­ca­sions”.

Donors left mes­sages of sup­port on the Just­Giv­ing page. One wrote: “Wish­ing the fam­i­lies all our com­mu­nity’s sup­port dur­ing this tragic and dif­fi­cult time.”

An­other said: “A kind and friendly man, who was such a con­stant part of life on The Broad­way. Bless­ings and strength to his fam­ily.”

www.just­giv­ing.com/crowd­fund­ing/ yitzchak-scho­chet

PHOTO: PA

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