November 1, 2003 | Issue 6

Chanukah Bargain Hunter Trampled in Shopping Frenzy

BROOKLYN, NY — [] A mob of shoppers rushing for a sale on Chanukah oil trampled the first man in line and knocked him unconscious as they scrambled for the shelves at an Eichler's Supercenter.

Ingantzen Tzishmetert had his eye on a $10 bottle of oil, but when the siren blared at 6 a.m. Sunday announcing the start to the pre-Chanukah sale, the 41-year-old was knocked to the ground by the frenzy of shoppers behind him.

"He got pushed down and they walked over him like a herd of elephants," said Tzishmetert's brother, Mamesh Tzishmetert. "I told them, 'Stop stepping on my brother! He's on the ground!'"

Mamesh said some shoppers tried to help Ingantzen and one employee helped Mamesh reach his brother, but most people just continued their rush for deals.

"All they cared about was some stupid Chanukah oil," he said Monday.

Paramedics called to the store found Tzishmetert unconscious and lying on top of a bottle of Chanukah oil, surrounded by shoppers seemingly oblivious to him, said Dovid Shafer, a spokesman for Hatzoloh.

He was flown to Maimonides Medical Center in downtown Boro Park, where doctors told the family that Tzishmetert had a seizure after he was knocked down and would likely remain hospitalized through the weekend. Hospital officials said Monday they did not have any information on his condition.

"He's all black and blue," Mamesh said. "Ingy doesn't remember anything. He still can't believe it all happened."

Mamesh said Eichler's officials called later Sunday to ask about his brother. The store apologized and offered to put a bottle of Chanukah oil on hold for him.

Eichler's spokesman Solomon Gluck said he had never heard of such a melee during a sale.

"We are very disappointed this happened," Gluck said. "We want him to come back as a shopper."


Pencil Martin Bodek is short, dark, handsome, runs marathons (finishes them too!), can solve a Rubik's Cube in 1:47, is a big TED chasid, can whup your keister in Scrabble, loves halva, co-founded, and writes books from 5-9:


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