(New York Jewish Week) – Riverdale mourns David Moshe Henoch, 18, who died July 10 after a scuba diving accident while traveling with his father in Miami, a month after graduating. from SAR High School in June and just weeks after her younger sister’s wedding.
The close-knit Modern Orthodox community in the Bronx, where Henoch grew up and attended SAR Jewish day schools, remembered him as an inquisitive, sensitive, and empathetic leader among his peers, with a deep sense of humor. and enthusiasm for many different fields. life. Friends and family described him as an avid adventurer whose favorite activities – which he enjoyed doing very much with his father Avi – included snowboarding, sailing and basketball. He was a certified diver.
Henoch, nicknamed Divi, intended to complete a gap year at Torah Tech in Tel Aviv before studying engineering at the University of Florida.
Henoch was the youngest brother in his family, the little brother of Ariella Goldhammer, 30, and Britt Henoch, 27, but showed what friends and family called a maturity beyond his years.
Britt recalled her wedding, which was held on June 27, when Divi helped keep her stress and emotions at bay by staying with Britt and keeping guests away. The two went for a drive together before the big day. “Divi really protected me. He came to sit with me and just listened to me,” Britt told New York Jewish Week. “He was really sensitive to that and set a boundary for me. It was a moment of maturity for him.
At the wedding itself, Henoch gave a lively, entertaining and confident speech congratulating his sister and her husband Noam Weinreich, his parents said.
The siblings were at SAR together from 2018 to 2022 – Divi as a student and Britt as a ninth grade math teacher. Their mother, Aviva, would drive the two to school together, and during her first year of teaching, Divi would mock her (and encourage rowdy among her friends) by holding up a sign at the classroom windows that said, “Her mother is always driving her to school.
Josh Brody, Henoch’s best friend, neighbor and classmate, deeply admired Henoch’s leadership and quiet wisdom. When Brody first snowboarded in Vermont with Henoch and Avi, Henoch stayed with Brody all day teaching him the basics. “For hours Divi accompanied me up the bunny slopes despite my constant failures and the slope clearly bored him as it was way below his skill level,” Brody said.
“I’ve always looked up to Divi,” he added, and the two shared memories of biking, hiking, boating, driving, traveling and attending Yankees games together. “Every Shabbat we spent hours together at the Riverdale Jewish Center talking, laughing and playing games,” he said, referring to a local synagogue. “Together, Divi and I talked, sang, danced and played sports with anyone who wanted to join us, for all kinds of times.”
Henoch was active in his Jewish community and loved leading services and reading Torah at the RJC, according to Rabbi Binyamin Krauss, director of the SAR Academy. He believed in learning Torah and engaging with the world, and “died exploring the world,” Rabbi Krauss said.
Henoch was a camper at Camp Moshava and Camp Morasha, as well as a fish and nature advisor at Camp Moshava for a year.
Parents and friends said that Divi, a successful student in math and science, encourages his friends to pursue activities and interests that suit them, whether it’s studies, sports or manual labor. .
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“Divi always challenged me to improve. He was open to anyone and all ways, no matter how mild or extreme. He was persuasive but not interested in imposing his ways on others Divi strongly believed that everyone had their own path and way of life,” Brody said. “He was as fearless as he could be and was never afraid to be himself.
“He was the kind of kid who wasn’t afraid to do his own thing,” and encouraged his friends to do the same, his sister Britt said. “If he wanted to do something, he would do it.”
Henoch enjoyed building things and solving problems, skills he planned to hone while studying engineering. For his senior year-end project, Henoch learned how to use power tools to renovate a 70-year-old shed in his family’s driveway and build a clubhouse for himself. “He was spending time there every day” for a few months, his father said.
“He was inspired to make the world a better place and get things done,” Rabbi Krauss said.
Henoch’s family held a funeral service on Tuesday, July 12 at JFK Airport. He was buried the following day at the Eretz HaChaim Cemetery in Beit Shemesh, Israel, in a ceremony attended by hundreds of people and via live broadcast.