JERUSALEM, Israel — Flanked by his father and siblings, Dean Teremforush, 13, proudly read from the Torah in front of Jerusalem’s Western Wall. Conspicuously absent, however, from the bar mitzvah service ñ one of several arranged in the last few weeks by the Chabad Terror Victims Project ñ was the boy’s mother, who perished five years ago in a terrorist attack southeast of Tel Aviv.
On May 7, 2002, a suicide bomber struck a Rishon Lezion club, wounding 55 and killing 15, including Anat Teremforush. Her husband, Danny Teremforush, still suffers from leg injuries sustained in the attack.
“Danny makes every effort to be both a father and mother of his children,” said Rabbi Menachem Kutner, director of the terror victims project.
Besides the Monday bar mitzvah, the terror victims project ñ which assists families of Israeli terror victims ña trip around Jerusalem for the Teremforush family and a tour of the Western Wall tunnels. At the celebration, Kutner personally presented a new prayer shawl and set of tefillin to the bar mitzvah boy.
According to the rabbi, the ceremony ñ which marks a young man’s age of maturity in Judaism ñ was very joyous, a fact illustrated by the family’s dancing and singing at the event.