Exactly 100 years ago, a childless woman passed away and was buried in Old Montefiore Cemetery in Queens, NY. A century later, her gravesite was suddenly “rediscovered”, causing many to flock to her gravesite on the day of her yahrzeit.
The grave is the final resting place of Mrs. Eige Davidowitz, who passed away on Tes Sivan, 5683 – 1923. Not much is known about Mrs. Davidowitz, who did not leave any descendants. An online search only turns up a notice about her passing in Der Morgen Zshurnal, a Yiddish language daily newspaper published in New York City. There the ‘Chevra Agudas Achim Wiznitz Anshei Marmorosh’ society requests all members to attend the levaya of “our sister Eige Davidowitz”.
On her matzeiva, a touching poem is inscribed in Yiddish. It reads “Beloved people! I am very alone here and I didn’t leave behind any children. Please grant me as well a candle, and also beg for my neshama. In this zechus, may Hashem help you, you should live to see children and grandchildren in their old age with everything good, Amen.
For decades, the grave sat unnoticed in the vast cemetery, among thousands of others. Just a few feet away, tens of thousands visit the Rebbe’s Ohel every year, and other come to pay respects at the kevorim of their relatives. But her grave sat, alone.
Then, suddenly, just a day before her 100th yahrzeit, it began receiving renewed attention, with visitors coming from across New York. Others posted the picture of the matzeiva on social media, asking to daven or learn in her memory.
It is unclear where the “movement” started, or what reminded people to fulfill the woman’s request after a century. But what is clear is that when presented with a plea from the heart, Yidden responded, paying tribute to a woman they didn’t know and never heard of previously, but whose heartfelt request touched their hearts.