By COLlive reporter
A new book, “SHADAR: Touching Hearts, One Person at a Time,” tells the story of the iconic Shliach Rabbi Shmuel Dovid Raichik, a personal emissary of two Chabad Rebbes and the first Chabad representative on the West Coast.
The 400-page book, illustrated with 300 images and documents, also includes 100 pages of letters to Rabbi Raichik from the Rebbe and the Friediker Rebbe, many dealing with his shlichus, both in the original and translated into English.
After six years, hundreds of interviews and hundreds of hours of research, the life of the extraordinary Raichik couple, who were shluchim before the term was coined, is available to readers.
The book tells, with accounts and documents published for the first time, of how Rabbi Raichik, a young yeshivah student in Otwock, Poland, awoke one morning to the sound of German bombs falling on the idyllic resort town.
As the world he had known burned before his eyes, he fled, first to Vilnius, Lithuania, then to Kobe, Japan, and finally to Shanghai, China, where he helped lead the Lubavitch yeshivah in exile.
What makes this story phenomenal, explains the author, Dovid Zaklikowski, is that despite the trauma of war, the difficulties of starting life again in America, and the incredible challenge of establishing a Chabad presence in California, those who knew him say that Rabbi Raichik continued to live just as he had in Europe, with a fierce dedication to the Rebbe and Chassidus.
The book can be pre-ordered at a discount at HasidicArchives.com and will be delivered by the end of the month.