An Orthodox Jewish man whose business was damaged by Saturday’s explosion in Chelsea credits his Sabbath observance with saving his employees from harm.
Daniel Peretz, owner of King David Gallery on W. 23rd Street between 6th and 7th Avenues, got a first look at his store today according to the New York Times, and found himself faced with a blown out front window and over a dozen broken mirrors, some worth almost $3,000.
Peretz, who sells glass, mirrors, frames and custom furnishings, said he was lucky that the blast took place on Saturday when his business is closed due to his Orthodox Jewish faith.
“God was watching us,” said Peretz. “There is no question about it.”
Peretz was in Israel when the explosion occurred, but noted that if the bomb had exploded on a different day of the week his employees could have been injured by the flying debris.
At a press conference held this afternoon by Governor Andrew Cuomo in front of the King David Gallery, Peretz stood shoulder to shoulder with Senator Brad Hoylman, Assemblyman Richard Gottfried and Councilman Corey Johnson.
Cuomo announced that the state’s Department of Financial Services will be helping insured businesses and homeowners expedite their claims and that the state will reimburse those whose losses are not covered by insurance.
The governor thanked Peretz for giving him a tour of the gallery and also recognized Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie for their help in moving the process along quickly so that those who sustained damages in the explosion could be compensated without delay.
Peretz told the crowd at the press conference that he and his wife had emigrated from Israel after a Molotov cocktail was thrown in his wife’s car.
An American citizen for the past 30 years, Peretz stressed the importance of not being intimidated by acts of terror.
“I want to tell you guys, don’t let the terrorists scare us,” said Peretz. “If they scare us where are we going to go? I am here because of what happened in Israel, now where are we going to go, back to Israel? Everywhere it’s the same thing. So don’t let the terrorists scare anybody, especially New Yorkers.”