It’s difficult to imagine going to a cultural event in Jerusalem, especially one that is being held by a religious Zionist organization without bumping into Toby Willig and getting a wet kiss on the cheek.
Willig, who was a legendary figure both in Jerusalem – where she lived since 1986 – and also in her native New York, died on Wednesday at age 92.
Her zest for life and her youthful spirit were at odds with her chronological age.
Even when she could barely walk she had relatives or friends, especially her grandson Gary Willig, accompany her to where she wanted to go. They went with her to concerts, lectures, plays, gala dinners in luxury hotels and on trips to West Bank settlements.
When her eyesight began to fail, she had people read The Jerusalem Post and other publications to her from the first to the last page.
She was arguably one of the world’s most avid listeners to English radio news and a voracious consumer of newspapers. She was also a spontaneous letter writer, reacting on a daily basis to news items – which either enthralled or upset her.