Tributes to "modest and unassuming" Salford man killed in crush at Jewish festival in Israel

Moshe Bergman, 22, was buried at a funeral in Jerusalem in the early hours of Sunday 1st May

Tributes have been paid to a "modest and unassuming" 22-year-old Salford man killed in a stampede at a Jewish festival in Israel.

Moshe Bergman, was one of 45 people who died in the disaster at Mount Meron on Friday.

He was studying to become a Rabbi in Israel, where he lived with his wife who he married around 18 months ago.

A stampede left 45 dead and more than 150 injured at the Lag B'Omer festival, near Mount Meron in northern Israel, on Friday. Credit: PA

In a statement released on the family's behalf, Rabbi Arnold Saunders said Mr Bergman was a "wonderful and dedicated husband, son and brother".

He said: "His smile lit up a room and his cheerful countenance was uplifting and inspiring. He was a true and devoted friend to so many.

"Nothing was too much trouble for him. He was modest and unassuming, studious and hard-working.

"He had a great future ahead of him but alas the almighty had other ideas which we accept without question or bitterness - despite our grief and pain."


A Foreign Office spokesman said in a statement:

The crush took place at the Lag BaOmer religious festival, which was attended by nearly 100,000 mostly ultra-Orthodox Jews in northern Israel.

It occurred as thousands of people funnelled through a narrow passageway descending the mountain early on Friday.

People then reportedly fell on top of each other near a walkway after going down metal stairs.

Some 45 people were killed and 150 were injured in what has been described as Israel's deadliest civilian disaster.

The festival went ahead despite national coronavirus restrictions preventing gatherings of more than 500 people outdoors.

A stampede left 45 dead and more than 150 injured at the Lag B'Omer festival, near Mount Meron in northern Israel, on Friday. Credit: PA

The site is believed to be the burial place of prominent second-century sage Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai.

In a message of condolence to Israel's president Reuven Rivlin, the Queen said she was "deeply saddened" by the disaster.

She wrote:

The country's prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has promised an inquiry will take place into the tragedy, after calling it

However, while visiting the area, Mr Netanyahu was jeered by dozens of ultra-Orthodox protesters who blamed the government and police for the incident.