Beis Moshiach
  • Rabbi Yehuda Dukes Recovering

    In late March, Rabbi Yehuda Dukes was hospitalized in New York with COVID-19, a week after the otherwise healthy 38-year-old rabbi took ill at his Long Island home. Dukes spent a whopping four months on a ventilator, including nine weeks on an artificial lung machine • Full Story


    At a moment when the world could use a dose of hope, along comes Rabbi Yehuda “Yudi” Dukes.

    In late March, Dukes was hospitalized in New York with COVID-19, a week after the otherwise healthy 38-year-old rabbi took ill at his Long Island home. Dukes spent a whopping four months on a ventilator, including nine weeks on an artificial lung machine.

    He endured four collapsed lungs, experienced a stroke and underwent a liver biopsy, among other challenges. He is believed to be among the longest hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the country.

    And then he began to improve.

    Earlier this summer, Dukes regained consciousness after having been in an induced coma for months. In late June, he began to mouth words. By early August, he was eating food again. And as of last week, he was breathing entirely on his own.

    In a hopeful post on Facebook, his wife, Sarah, reported: “The procedure that Yudi had a couple of days ago to help seal the air leak in his lung was successful, thank G-d(!) and today Yudi’s 4th and final chest tube was removed! This was the final step needed before Yudi would be able to leave the ICU and begin rehab!!!”

    Throughout the spring and summer, as Dukes endured a roller-coaster of advances and regressions in his condition, Sarah, a mental health specialist, posted updates on her husband’s condition to Facebook and Instagram. She charted his medical team’s heroic efforts to save him and encouraged people to pray and perform a mitzvah on his behalf.

    People from as far away as Berlin and Rwanda dusted off their tefillin, lit Shabbat candles or recited Tehillim on Dukes’ behalf. Even Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams took note, declaring July 23 Yudi Dukes Day in Brooklyn and issuing a proclamation that hangs on the wall in the rabbi’s hospital room.

    “This has not been done to me,” Dukes told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency by phone from the medical intensive care unit at NYU’s Langone hospital. “It’s been done for me.”

    Sarah Dukes struck a similar note in an Aug. 11 Facebook post.

    “Yudi is able to see how everything specifically and the trauma in general is helping him grow in so many ways,” she wrote. “He told me today, ‘Every experience that I have been having, no matter how painful or negative it seems, is there to bring out the best in me and help me grow to be a better person. This trauma has been an opportunity for discovery.’”

    Sarah began posting about Dukes’ condition from the day he was admitted to the hospital on March 30. Initially she posted to seek practical help for her family as well as prayers for her husband. But she soon realized that a community had formed that was providing strength and spiritual sustenance. Inspired by her posts, Dukes’ JNet colleagues launched a campaign, “Do a Mitzvah for Yudi.”

    “The good deeds they were doing made me feel he was protected and safe,” Sarah told JTA.

    On May 31, after Dukes experienced a setback and had to have his sedation increased, Sarah posted a video of herself sitting at the piano with her 12-year-old son Baruch playing “Once Again,” a melody they composed for him.

    “The past couple of days have been a lot harder for me emotionally,” she wrote. “Seeing Yudi have a big setback is scary for me, and also very sad. I know he’s going to be ok in the end, and the nurses have been so reassuring, but I miss him so much. I haven’t been able to speak with him for over 2 months. Hearing my two year old son ask his father why he’s not talking back to him over the phone and that he wants him to sing to him completely broke me inside.”

    Music has always been at the center of the Dukes’ relationship — and the couple’s children have picked up the score, writing and singing their own songs. Even as he lay unconscious, Sarah’s original compositions played in his hospital room. Some evenings, a nurse would hold up the phone to Dukes as Sarah played from their home.

    As Sarah anticipates her husband’s homecoming, she plans to release a recording of “Triumph,” a song she began composing two years ago when her daughter was treated for a serious medical condition and has now completed.

    “This is for Yudi,” she told JTA. “This is for our family. This is for everyone because everyone is fighting some sort of battle. But we get up every day, we get out, we do what we have to do. And everyone is triumphant.”


    Tags: ,

    Related Posts:

    *Only proper comments will be allowed
  • Event Calendar

  • Tuesday, Oct 27th, Wedding – Shlome Wolvovsky – CH & Rochel Leah Matusof – Madison, WI @ Oholei Torah
  • Thursday Oct 29th Wedding: Devorah Bennish – Detroit & Mordechai Rubin – London @ Royalty House, MI
  • Sunday, Oct 25th, Sholli Miller – Chicago, IL & Batya Korf – Miami Beach, FL @ Bais Rivka 310 Crown Street
  • Thursday, Oct 22 Wedding: Chaim Boruch Bar-Chaim – CH & Shoshana Pimentelli – CH/TX @ Oholei Torah
  • Thursday, Oct 22 L’Chaim: Sruli Finck – CH & Chaya Mangel – Dayton, OH @ Chovevei Torah 885 Eastern Parkway
  • Tuesday, Oct 20th Wedding: Dovid Kaminetzky – Melbourne, AU & Chaya Okunov – Crown Heights @ Oholei Torah
  • Monday Oct 19 L’Chaim: Ari (Aaron) Levertov – Crown Heights & Debby Rabinowicz – Sao Paulo, Brazil @ Choivevey Torah
  • Monday, Oct 19 2015 Wedding: Mendy Zippel – Salt Lake City, UT & Fraidy Shagalov – Crown Heights @ Oholei Torah
  • Sunday 18th Oct. L’Chaim: Chananya Niassoff – CH & Tzirl Brennan – CH @ Bais Rivkah Crown St
  • Sunday Oct 18th – Wedding: Mendy Edelman – Crown Heights & Sara Lozenik – Miami, FL @ Oholei Torah
  • Tehilim

  • Urgent Tehillim Needed
  • Dov Chaim Ben Rivkah
  • Tzvi Hirsch Ben Guttel
  • Charna Alexandra bas Chana Esther
  • Ettie Bas Alte Miriam
  • Zissel Yehudis Bas Masha
  • Chaim Yosef Yitzchok Ben Sarah Elka
  • Devorah Bas Sarah
  • Boruch Ben Sarah
  • DovBer Ben Dina
  • Lost and Found

  • Lost Men’s Heavy Black Winter Jacket Size Large in 770
  • Lost in 770 before Pesach, a black Bradley Jons long coat size 38R. No lining and no belt. Almost brand new! Please call zalman at 347-788-0749
  • Found black hats outside 770, behind the Hatzalah ambulance
  • lost – Chitas bearing a blessing to Shmuel from Sarge. (Sargent Zvi Fisher z..l.v) [email protected] or +1-7869427070
  • LOST: in 770 a black Lenovo Intel core i5 laptop in a dark grey laptop bad together with a WD hard drive, if found please call Zalmy 347-788-0749
  • Found: Maroon Chitas
  • Found: Bag of Clothes
  • Found: Leather-Bound Pink Siddur
  • Lost: Box with Mini Shas from YSP
  • Lost: Rose Gold Bangle/Bracelet
  • Classifieds

  • Cook position for a local Mosad
  • Looking for a cook/kitchen manager
  • Administrator for a local Mosad Experience a must, and preferbiligual a bonus [email protected]
  • Looking for a cook/kitchen manager Experience a must. [email protected]
  • ‘Beis Mosiach’s’ to give away for free
  • Private Rooms for Men
  • Newly renovated Basement for rent
  • Judaica Store in Crown Heights is Looking to Hire
  • Looking for Work? Opportunity available, for a quick & efficient typist in Williamsburg. For more info: 201-800-1774
  • Lost in 770 Last Week: Transparant Bag of Tefillin, Rashi, R”T, Chitas – in black/grey 770 pouches