An overflow crowd of hundreds of Hasidic Jews gathered Saturday night at an emotional Brooklyn funeral for murdered millionaire real estate developer Menachem Stark.
Grief-stricken speakers at the Lodiner Bais Medrash synagogue in Williamsburg recalled Stark, whose charred corpse was found in a Long Island dumpster, as a generous figure who was always quick to help the less fortunate in the Satmar Hasidic community.
Wailing mourners interrupted the speakers, who addressed a swelling crowd of hundreds gathered outside in frigid cold on Marcy Avenue.
“You know they burned him and left him in the trash,” one young boy told his father in Yiddish before the start of the funeral.
“Horrible,” the father exclaimed. “Don’t tell your sisters.”
The funeral took place in accordance with Orthodox custom just hours after Stark’s burnt body was returned to his family by authorities.
Stark, 39, a father of eight, was abducted and bundled into a van as he left his real estate office just before midnight on Thursday, at the height of a blizzard that slammed the city.
The owner of a gas station discovered his smoldering body in a garbage dumpster Friday afternoon. Authorities identified it as Stark Saturday morning.
Police quickly focused on Stark’s murky role in a string of real estate deals gone bad. His name appears in several multimillion dollar legal disputes — and tenants slammed him on online forums as a heartless slumlord.
At the funeral, speakers recalled a generous man who had an open door to the community. The first speaker at the funeral emphasized Stark’s charity, his willingness to give people money for food, for rent, to help out anyone in the community.