Rabbi Hartley Perlmutter was surprised recently when he stepped onto a TTC bus, paid his fare and began to make his way to the back of the nearly empty bus.
“As I neared the back, I noticed something metallic shining on one of the seats in the back row,” Rabbi Perlmutter told The CJN.
“Intrigued, I moved closer and realized that lying on the seat was a pair of silver Torah rimonim, or crowns,” added Rabbi Perlmutter, 27, who teaches at Bnei Akiva Schools.
Looking around the almost-empty bus travelling in the Wilson Avenue and Bathurst Street area, only one person sat near the rear of the vehicle. Rabbi Perlmutter lifted the rimonim to see if the passenger near the back of the bus would indicate ownership.
“But all I got was a blank look.”
He said his mind began to race.
“Where were they from? Who left them here? Why were they being taken –perhaps for maintenance? Stolen? In the process of being donated? Why were they not wrapped up and protected?”
After examining the rimonim, which are used to adorn Torah cases that house the Torah scrolls and the handles of Torah rollers of both Ashkenazi and Sephardi Sefer Torah scrolls, Rabbi Perlmutter realized from the inscription that they were more than 100 years old.
The markings in Hebrew script describe the circumstances under which the rimonim were originally donated.
He believes the rimonim are made of actual silver, as they are tarnished. Beyond that, he doesn’t want to reveal more about the items or where and when they were found, “in order to use that information to verify that the person is telling the truth.”
Recalling stories of individuals who used social media to post lost and found items on Facebook, Rabbi Perlmutter posted a picture of the rimonim and urged as many people as possible to share the post in the hope their owner would eventually see the posts.
Rabbi Perlmutter noted, “I included a caption on the post that said, ‘I just found a pair of Torah Rimonim on a TTC bus. Anyone with info to help me return these to their owner would be appreciated. Please share to spread the word.’”
“To date, the post has been shared 75 times, but the owner still remains a mystery,” Rabbi Perlmutter said. “So I thought The CJN could help send out the message of the lost rimonim.”