David Tamar z"l
I met Tamar only once. His father, Yissachar Tamar, devoted his lifetime to the study of the Jerusalem Talmud. He wrote a commentary titled Alei Tamar and amassed a library focused on the topic. That library was transferred after his death to Yeshivat Har Etzion, and his yahrzeit is observed there every year. One year, the son came for the memorial service and came up to the beit midrash. He was a sorry sight. His clothes were unwashed, his thoughts were scattered, but he was looking for intelligent conversation. He approached my havruta and myself, and starting showing us letters he had received from the Lubavitcher Rebbe (and other people, but I don't remember who).
As it happens, I read an article by Tamar less than a week after he died. Though republished in a collection of his articles on Jewish history in Eretz Yisrael and Italy, it was about R. Israel Isserlein, a 15th century Austrian rabbi known to some by the name of his book, Terumat HaDeshen. It is an article that has been harshly reviewed by Yaakov Elbaum, and contains some very unscholarly comments on topics like the literary quality of R Isserlein's poetry.
I learned one fascinating piece of information from David Tamar's article. He refers to a sentence in Leket Yosher, a description of life with R Isserlein written by one of his students. In discussing mourning customs he tells how:
וזכורני ששכיבא ליה ברתא קטנה שמה מושקט ז"ל לעת זקנתו ואין לו עוד בת ואין אנו יכולים לאמר לו דברי תנחומים...
And I remember that his young daughter died in his old age. Her name was Muscat and he had no other daughter and we could not say anything to console him...
Leket Yosher part 2. p. 97
Later, reading Avraham Grossman's book on French sages, I found that Rashi also buried a daughter:
ורבי' שלמה קרע על בתו בחול המועד אעפ"י שאין דין אבילות נוהג בם כלל
And R Shlomo tore his clothes over his daughter on Hol HaMoed even though there is no mourning on those days at all
Sefer HaNiyar, p. 60
Grossman suggests that this daughter was the youngest of Rashi's children. And he, like R Yisrael, was also inconsolable, refusing to wait until after the festival in order to mourn his child.
Avraham Grossman, Hachmei Zarefat HaRishonim, Jerusalem 1997, p. 125, n. 13
David Tamar, 'Demuto HaRuhanit shel R Israel Isserlein', Sinai 32 (1953), pp. 175-185 = idem, Mehkarim be-toldot ha-Yehudim be-Eretz Israel uve-Italya, Jerusalem 1973, pp. 55-65
Yaakov Elbaum, Teshuvat haLev ve-Kabbalat Yissurim, Jerusalem 1993, p. 28-29