Black bear kills Hasidic infant
lnp3 at panix.com
Tue Aug 20 08:25:01 MDT 2002
(Just spoke to my mother. She lives about a mile from the bungalow colony
where the incident took place. Couple of interesting notes that the article
only hints at. The reference to "trash generated by a camp full of
families" is well understood by local citizens. It appears that the Satmar
sect, which favors the area for its summer vacations, is--to be blunt about
it--filthy. The last time I was upstate my mom told me that the year-round
inhabitants--mostly Jews themselves--were putting pressure on the Satmars
to clean up their act or else they would be fined or even arrested. A while
back I reported on "Postville", a fascinating book dealing with the culture
clash between Christians in Iowa and the Lubavitcher sect that has bought
the local meat packinghouse and houses in town. The local residents resent
the Jews for their insularity and their lack of tidiness. It is basically
the same kind of clash in my mother's village. Another thing worth noting
about these rival sects. The Satmars are militantly anti-Zionist while the
Lubavitchers are totally committed to Israeli expansionism. The other
interesting element is the environmental. NY has had 16 heat-alert days
this summer and is in a drought emergency. Who knows. Maybe Yahweh is
trying to tell us something. Either respect nature or avenging angels will
gobble up your children like in Pharoah's Egypt.)
Middletown Record, August 20, 2002
Black bear kills baby girl
By Heather Yakin
Woodridge A black bear snatched a baby girl from her stroller and killed
Officials said the baby's death is the first such fatality reported in New
York state history.
Just after 2 p.m. yesterday, 5-month-old Esty Schwimmer was sleeping in a
stroller outside her family's bungalow at Wood Haven Bungalows, also known
as Camp Ohel Fayge, on River Road near Woodridge.
Fallsburg police said Esty's mother, Rachel Schwimmer, was attending to her
two other children, ages 2½ and 4, outside her bungalow, set in the back of
the quiet, woodsy colony, about 15 feet from the tree line. Suddenly other
residents screamed, "Bear! Bear!"
The mother pushed the two older children into the house.
But when she turned to grab Esty, the baby was gone.
Lawrence said the summer has been especially dry, and berries and other
bear foods have dried up. The smell of cooking, other foods and trash
generated by a camp full of families could easily attract hungry bears.
"Bears can smell food from a long way off," Lawrence said. He said if you
see a bear, "take two pots and bang them together. And 99 percent of the
time, they're going to run away."
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