Herschel Siegel Obituary, Death Cause – Herschel Siegel was a young guy who was well-known in his neighborhood for his enthusiasm and his love for life. Eshel is extremely heartbroken by the untimely passing of Herschel Siegel. It was astonishing how positive he was toward everyone he came in contact with. Herschel, a native of Atlanta who had graduated from Yeshiva University, took his own life on Friday, April 28.
His death occurred on the eve of the Torah portion known as Parshat Acharei Mot-Kedoshim. Although we will never know all of Hershel’s struggles, we can say with certainty that the horrific experience of being labelled a “abomination” by his Orthodox community had a significant impact on him. In March, Hershel posted the following on Instagram: “Abomination.
The one and only word that can be understood by my ears. Abomination. The one concept that got through my decades of well created mental defenses was that “my very EXISTENCE as a gay, Jewish, Male was an abomination.”
This religious discourse generates a constant backdrop hum that makes us feel twisted, ugly, and fearful; that deprives us of God’s love; and that destroys our expectations for a bright future.
Even when it is not utilized to bully or abuse, this rhetoric nonetheless forms the background. Alienation, loneliness, and hopelessness will continue to be a problem for LGBTQ people who are members of Orthodox communities unless such communities can provide LGBTQ people with an affirmation of their dignity and a vision for a loving future.