An hours-long search through a garbage heap was worth it for a group of Brooklyn residents who were finally able to locate cherished religious items that were accidentally thrown in the trash.
Last Thursday, a pair of tefillin — boxes containing Hebrew texts that Jewish men wear on their heads and arms during morning prayer — were mistakenly thrown away. The owner noticed them was missing, and called a Williamsburg Jewish organization to get help in tracking down the beloved items.
The group was able to review security footage that showed which New York City Sanitation truck picked up the trash on Monday. After talking with the department, they learned the truck was kept at the Varick Avenue transfer station, the group said.
That led to hours of picking through the garbage Monday night. The volunteers worked with Sanitation employees and sported protective suits, gloves, boots and masks during the rigorous search, the United Jewish Organizations of Williamsburg said in a press release.
Finally, the workers and volunteers were able to locate the tefillin, much to the joy of the volunteers and the group.
"Thank you to the New York City Sanitation Department! We reached out for help, and, as always, they came through for the community," said Rabbi David Neiderman. "I would also like to thank Isaac Neuwirth who led the search for these treasured items among heaps of trash."