It is with great sadness that we report the petirah (death) of Hagaon Rav Chaim Dov Keller zt”l, rosh yeshiva of Telshe Yeshiva in Chicago. He was 90 years old.
Born in New York City in 1930, Rav Keller attended Yeshivas Rabbeinu Yitzchok Elchonon and then joined Telshe Yeshiva in Cleveland, Ohio, where he learned under the roshei yeshiva, Rav Chaim Mordechai Katz and Rav Eliyahu Meir Bloch, the latter of whom became his rebbi muvhak.
He became renowned for his brilliance and hasmadah, and was recognized as a budding talmid chochom.
He married his wife, Rebbetzin Chaya Devorah Keller a”h, a daughter of Rav Leizer Levin zt”l, rov of Detroit.
In 1960, Telshe Yeshiva in Chicago was founded by Rav Avrohom Chaim Levin and Rav Chaim Schmelczer. A year later, Rav Keller, Rav Levin’s brother-in-law, joined as rosh yeshiva.
Rav Keller served as a member of the nesius, or presidium, of Agudas Yisroel of America and was a speaker at a number of Agudah Conventions.
Rav Keller, in addition to his remarkable Torah erudition and vast yedios haTorah, had a remarkable ability to convey hashkafas haTorah with clarity, both in speeches delivered with flowering oratory and in writing, utilizing his talented pen. Rav Keller became a most eloquent spokesman for Torah Jewry, encapsulating the proper outlook on contemporary issues with unparalleled lucidity and forthrightness.
Rav Keller was a noted mechadeish in all areas of Torah, and some of his chiddushei Torah were published in his multi-volume Sefer Chidekel.
Rav Keller’s rebbetzin passed away a number of years ago and he married his second wife, Rebbetzin Shulamis (Prager).
Rav Keller is survived by his wife, Rebbetzin Shulamis (Prager) Keller; his children, Rav Shmuel Yeshaya Keller, rosh yeshiva at Telshe Yeshiva in Chicago; Rav Elya Meir Keller, R”M at Yeshiva Yesodei Hatorah of Lakewood; Mrs. Craindell Mannes, principal at Bais Yaakov High School in Chicago; Mrs. Sori Schechter, principal of Bais Yaakov of Lakewood; Mrs. Chani Treff of Lakewood; and Mrs. Leah Bogen of Yerushalayim; and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
The levayah will be held at 5 p.m. outside of Telshe Yeshiva Chicago, located at 3535 West Foster Avenue in Chicago, IL. Additional seating will be available in the yeshiva‘s backyard. Seating for ladies will be available outside of CarFix at 3555 West Foster Avenue. Parking will be available at Northeastern Illinois University, Lots H, J and L. The yeshiva‘s bais medrash will be closed. Please observe all CDC recommended social distancing guidelines.
There will also be a levayah in Lakewood on Tuesday. Kevurah will be in Eretz Yisroel on Wednesday.
Audio and video hookup information will be forthcoming.
Yehi zichro boruch.