It was an ordinary day and Dovid (name changed) was preparing to catch the late afternoon EL AL flight to Eretz Yisrael. He had yahrzeit for his father and planned his trip so he’d arrive there just in time to join his brother at the kever. He parked his car in the area that facilitated a faster trip to JFK for his flight. Little did he know that he was being observed by a team of thieves who were “working” the Diamond District that day in order to rob the merchants of their goods.
Just as Dovid was loading his trunk with his carry-on bag, a man approached him saying he had dropped some money on the ground. Dovid stopped what he was doing and noticed some bills on the ground, not thinking if it was his. At that moment another man quickly reached into the trunk and grabbed his carry-on bag and ran away with it. By the time he realized what had occurred, both men had disappeared into the midtown Manhattan afternoon crowd.
Dovid was frantic and upset. He had his passport, ticket, two pairs of tefillin, expensive cufflinks, and an envelope of cash earmarked for tzedakah in the bag. Baruch Hashem, most of his own money was in his pocket.
He went to report the robbery to the local police precinct. Unfortunately, he found out that these thieves had been targeting people all day with the same ruse. The police took down his information and told him to go home and be happy he was not injured.
Dovid went home extremely upset, as he was now unable to travel to Eretz Yisrael for his father’s yahrzeit as planned. He never missed going there since his father’s petirah. He put money in the Rabbi Meir Baal Haness pushka and said the tefillah for lost articles.
About 20 minutes later he received a phone call from a non-frum man, who said he was about to enter a restaurant in midtown Manhattan when he noticed a piece of luggage sitting on top of a garbage can outside the restaurant. Inside the luggage he saw religious articles that he deemed important and necessary to a religious Jew. When he looked through the bag for identification, he found Dovid’s business card with all the relevant information needed to contact him. The cash and cufflinks were gone, but his passport, tickets and two pairs of tefillin were intact.
Dovid, ecstatic as he ran to meet the caller, rebooked on the day’s last flight. He rewarded the kind and thoughtful man with cash, and had a very meaningful visit at his father’s kever. Dovid truly believes that his father’s neshamah was watching over him.Rochelle Rothman