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Donor rushes new menorah to North Beach group after theft

A menorah stolen from a park in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood has been replaced with a gift from an East Coast benefactor.

The menorah, a 6-foot tall, 3-foot wide brass model weighing around 100 pounds and belonging to the North Beach Chabad of San Francisco, was reported missing from Washington Square Park around noon on Christmas Day, shortly before a scheduled celebration, according to police.

The theft received widespread coverage and sparked the interest of a donor in Massachusetts, who shipped a handmade wooden menorah that is designed to be portable, according to Rabbi Peretz Mochkin.

Mochkin described the support his group has received in the wake of the theft as “really beautiful.”

“We’re really happy about the community coming together over this,” Mochkin said.

The group is participating in a planned Hanukkah event at Ghirardelli Square this evening but will use the new menorah, which arrived this morning, at an event tomorrow back in Washington Square Park.

The original menorah is still missing. Police have said they are asking metal recyclers to be on the lookout for anyone trying to sell large brass pieces for recycling.

Anyone with information about the theft is asked to contact the police anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444 or by texting TIP411 with SFPD at the beginning of the message.

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