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“The Angel Rafael accompanies him,” proclaimed the Pshevorsker Rebbe about Dr. Shlomo Adler, Europe’s most famous Jewish physician. Those of us who never merited to meet Dr. Shlomo Adler while he was alive — as story after story emerges just a few short weeks after his petirah — are beginning to understand. London, and all of Europe, have lost an outstanding doctor. Am Yisrael has lost an outstanding Yid. Mishpacha pays tribute to this beloved healer of both bodies and souls.
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
If it’s possible to say that some people are born with a silver spoon in their mouth, then one could say about Dr. Shlomo Adler that he was born with a stethoscope attached to his ear. His father, Dr. Avraham Adler, was one of European Jewry’s leading doctors, meriting to treat Torah luminaries such as the Imrei Emes of Gur and Rav Yerucham Levovitz of Mir.
Dr Avraham’s busy Leipzig medical practice and university research often took him to far-flung European communities. When Shlomo, who was born in 5684/1923, was old enough, he would sometimes accompany his father on these travels. One of those trips took the two of them to Marienbad, the picturesque health resort famous for its healing waters. While Dr. Adler, senior, saw to the medical needs of the Imrei Emes, the young boy told the Gerrer Rebbe that he too wanted to become a doctor. On the spot, the Rebbe gave him a brachah that he should succeed in his father’s path.
In 1937, as winds of change began to blow through Europe, the Adler family relocated to the United Kingdom, where Dr. Adler opened a clinic in London’s Golders Green. His sterling reputation preceded him, and due to demand, he opened another clinic in London’s West End.
Shlomo entered medical school during World War II, while continuing to study in London’s Etz Chaim yeshivah. While German fighter planes began their nine-month-long bombing of London that became known as the London Blitz, Rav Eliyahu Lopian kept open his Etz Chaim Yeshivah — and Shlomo kept learning. He learned bechavrusa with Rav Leib Gurwicz, ztz”l, who would later become rosh yeshivah of Gateshead yeshivah. Reb Leib later recounted that even during the dash to the shelters when the sirens sounded, the young medical student didn’t stop learning.
After he graduated, Shlomo Adler joined his father’s famous clinic — but Dr. Avraham Adler passed away just two years later, in 1948, at the young age of fifty-seven.
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