A Jewish family in San Francisco was hoping for a New Year’s miracle Sunday after a religious heirloom that had been in the family for several generations was stolen off her front porch.
Kathy Rosenberg-Wohl and her family were shuttling back and forth in the city’s Western Addition neighborhood after synagogue Sunday, hoping someone saw a tallit, or Jewish prayer shawl, that's been in her family for eight generations, having even survived the Holocaust.
“My husband and I have put up over 60 signs. We've spoken to everyone in the neighborhood that we can,” said Rosenberg-Wohl.
She had lent the shawl a cousin for her son's Bar Mitzvah, but when her cousin FedEx-ed it back to her last week, it was stolen right off her front porch after it had arrived Thursday.
There was a moment of hope when a Good Samaritan returned the damaged FedEx box to them, having found it near the Geary Street footbridge.
“Originally I thought he had the contents of the box, I didn't realize it was empty,” said Rosenberg-Wohl.
As of Sunday evening, the tallit was still nowhere to be found, devastating her family while they try to celebrate the Jewish high holidays.
“It's the most valuable item to our family that we own. It has no monetary value, but it has complete sentimental value,” said Lauren Blachman, Rosenburg-Wohl’s cousin.
Rosenberg-Wohl said she hoped her story would serve as a warning to others: when shipping something important, always require a signature upon delivery.
“Never ever try to save time by leaving a very important item without a signature because I learned a brutal lesson,” said Rosenberg-Wohl.
Still, her family hadn't given up hope Sunday that someone would see their signs and attempt to return it.
“We hope it's been keeping someone warm or been doing something valuable in this in between time. But we hope that it's able to be returned to us,” said Rosenberg-Wohl.
Rosenberg-Wohl said Sunday that the prayer shawl was in a blue zippered bag that says “Shalom” on it, and that bag had been placed in a black and red drawstring sling pack before it was shipped.
Her family was planning on offering a reward for its safe return.
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