Stories about Gavriel
Most of the anecdotes about Gavriel are written in Hebrew.
Meanwhile here is something written by an English speaking school friend and a few translated snippets.
Gavriel Hoter by Yehuda Levy
There are many reasons why Gavriel Hoter was a man to be emulated.
Gavriel – affectionately referred to by me as “Gavrool”- took advantage of his time as anyone I knew. When he wasn’t involved in his studies in the yeshiva high school- where he and I were classmates for three years- he raised himself to higher level of knowledge via university courses. I remember having to keep up with his brisk pace when we used to walk together. It was a definite sign of a man who knew where he was going and had no time to waste.
Gavriel rarely complained about anything, and he tried to make the best of any and every situation. One was most likely to see him with a smile on his face, and he was always eager to help his classmates when an opportunity to do so arose. Yet another quality I remember clearly was his ability to be a leader; be it for a project for Purim or for a Shabbat Yeshiva that needed organizing, you knew you could always count on him to stay on top of things.
In spite of his obvious intellectual prowess and physical ability – he was one of the strongest in the class despite being the youngest – as well as the other qualities I have listed above, Gavriel never found reason to be haughty. His personality was ideal for joining with his friends and classmates in teenage activities without giving an aura of being better than them, despite his superiority in so many aspects.
There’s no doubt that Gavriel will be a man who will be both remembered and missed by classmates, friends, teachers, and Rabbis, Memories will be taken out and treasured, the individual in question grateful for the time he was able to spend with the special person that we knew as Gavriel Hoter.
You always looked for opportunities to help, to contribute, to influence — whether it was in the class committee or on the student council, in defending those who were weaker, or lugging the jerry cans of water on every trip.
What I remember about Gavriel is that he taught me the knots in scouting and helped me with schoolwork when I had difficulty, and comforted me when I was homesick for my mother, and made me dolls out of plasticine, and taught me to say the morning prayers because I didn’t know what to do in the synagogue every morning, and he always did skits with me on Sabbath morning, and banged on the table with the glasses when we sang songs after Kiddush. And he beat me at bowling, and gave me the long shirt he was wearing when I was cold, and told me stories before I went to sleep, and other good and wonderful things.
PRECISION IN KEEPING THE COMMANDMENTS
On trips with the Scouts you would always insist on keeping as many commandments as possible and on giving merit to the general population. On trips during Sukkot, you would bring boards and cloth, a hammer and nails, and build a sukkah according to Jewish law in the hills, in front of hundreds of people who would stare in astonishment at this boy of only 12 keeping the commandments, in spite of the fact that you were exempt because of the place and the pressures of time. But you wouldn’t eat, not even a little bite, until that sukkah was up.
“What was outstanding was the diligence, the perseverance and the equality of effort regarding everything that had to do with serving G-d.”
“He was a perfectly round sphere of positive attributes, with no angles or curves. Everything was equal.”