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Losing a Good Friend

How fortunate are we that knew and had the opportunity to view and admire the very special midos of Chaim Lobo Silber.

I consider myself particularly fortunate that I did not only get to experience Lobo as a friend but I had the zechus to interview him for The Vues and The Country Vues on many occasions. He was a true anav. He had to review every word to make sure nothing was said the wrong way . Every word had to be exact and when he expressed his feelings it was like a true torah giant.

Over the past few days, the perfect description of him was given  “The gadol hador of chesed”.

He was a true friend. Not a Friday would go by from when he got sick that I did not speak to him. I would call him or he would call me and make me feel special. I was not alone, He called  hundreds of people every Friday; almonas Rabbonim, relatives, his mother and his friends”.

The Admor Sasregan Rebbe Shlita told me that no matter how sick Chaim was or where he was, upstate, on the road or in the hospital he would never miss calling the Rebbe on Friday to wish the Rebbe a good Shabbos. The Rebbe could not remember a Friday he did not speak to Chaim.

Whether it was chesed with money or chesed with love and caring Chaim was number 1.

If Chaim did not give out one dollar to help people they would still be able to write a book about his chesed.

And everything was done with love.

This story was told to me by a talmid of Rav Pam who was in the shiur when this happened. Often a contributer to the Yeshiva would pass by the room where Rav Pam was giving shiur.  Always Rav Pam would continue giving shiur and at the end of the shiur go over and greet the contributer.

One day Lobo passed by the room and Rav Pam walked out and greeted him in the middle of the shiur. When Rav Pam came back and finished his shiur one of his talmidim asked why he left?

Never had the Rav stopped in the middle of shiur to greet someone.

Rav Pam answered there are many people who give tzedaka, there are many people that help the yeshiva, but there is no one that helps and gives with the simcha of Chaim Silber. When Chaim gives tzrdaka it is not burden it is a joy. For this I can stop and give him kavod”

You wil hear and read many stories over the next few weeks and years about Lobo.

Most will be true some will be exaggerated as every legend but know one thing Lobo was true he was emes.

Let me get a few baseball facts clear about Lobo.

I asked Chaim, “Where does the word Lobo come from?”

Chaim: True story, I was once playing basketball with Jack Rudman and he said “You’re playing like a ‘vilda chaya,’ like a Lobo.” Lobo means ‘wolf’ and somehow the name stuck and the next year when we started getting involved in playing, we called the team The Lobos.

He was a fierce competitor when I asked him.

I saw you play yesterday with your nephew as the opposing pitcher, which came first on the field for you, family or the Lobos?

Chaim laughed and answered on the field Lobos definitely. It was even more important for me to win yesterday because it was my nephew.

I will sum up Chaim’s beliefs with a question and his answer he gave me 5 years ago.

About the pride of the Lobos which was his philosophy that he passed on.

I asked him, “Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?”

Chaim responded: The real pride that I and all Lobos share all over the world is what the Lobo name has come to stand for. The Lobos are synonymous with Middos, Derech Eretz, Yiddishkeit, Mentchlichtkeit, Ehrlichkeit, Frumkeit, decency, integrity, Chesed, Tzedakkah and Yiras Shamayim. In every way we can the Lobos work to preserve and do things for a Kiddish Hashem, that’s our biggest pride which all Lobos and Lobo friends have become synonymous with, and we take pride on being on the greatest team in the world , the team of the am segula, our Jewish brothers and sisters… The team of am Yisroel.

May he be a meletz Yosher for his family and may all lobos and his friends continue to emulate the midos he taught us.