Story and photos by Elijah McKee
Photo, left: Mayor Bill Wells lights menorah in El Cajon
December 1, 2021 (El Cajon) — Even the most thought-out plans can be derailed by a last-minute change, especially when a leader falls ill. This wasn’t true for the Chabad of East County on Sunday, though, as they pulled off their first night of Hanukkah event at the El Cajon Civic Center without a hitch, despite the absence of Rabbi Rafi Andrusier and his wife Chaya, who tested positive for COVID-19 the day before.
They are both vaccinated, have mild cases, and will be back to normal soon — but instead of floundering in the unexpected changeup, a team of ten Chabad volunteers filled the void right away to execute the plans with the Rabbi’s virtual support. The event drew a large crowd two years ago but was skipped last year due to the pandemic — so it was all the more important for everyone to hold the tradition this year.