Funeral Details

Sarah Leah Small

December 21, 1934 - December 25, 2022


Date and Time

Tuesday, December 27, 2022 at 10:00 AM


North Suburban Synagogue Beth El
1175 Sheridan Road
Highland Park, Illinois 60035
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Rabbi Alex Freedman
North Suburban Synagogue Beth El


Mt. Carmel Cemetery
5529 Ditzler Ave
Raytown, Missouri 64133
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Sheila and Michael Small
115 Greenbriar Drive
Deerfield, Illinois 60015
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2PM - 5PM, 6:30PM - 9PM, Minyan at 7:30PM
10AM - 12PM, 1:30PM - 3:30PM
Saturday motzei Shabbat
6:30PM - 9PM, Minyan at 7:30PM
Morning Minyan at 9AM, 9AM - 1PM and 6PM - 9PM,
Minyan at 7:30PM
10AM - 1PM and 6PM - 9PM, Minyan at 7:30PM

Memorial Contributions

The Jewish Theological Seminary of America
3080 Broadway
New York, New York 10027-4650
Camp Ramah in Wisconsin
67 East Madison Street, Suite 1905
Chicago, Illinois 60603
40 Wall Street
New York, New York 10005
A Charity of Your Choice


Sarah Small died peacefully on December 25, the Eighth night of Hanukkah. Sarah was born on December 21, 1934 in Kansas City, Missouri to Clara and John Kraft. She graduated from Central High School and graduated from University of Missouri at Kansas City with a B.A. in History and Government, for her freshman year, Sarah attended the Teachers Institute of the Joint Program between Jewish Theological Seminary and Columbia University in New York, where she studied with many of the leading Jewish scholars of the modern era. In August 1957, Sarah married Mendel Small, also of Kansas City, living in Cambridge, Mass as Mendel completed his degree at Harvard Law School. Sarah worked in a clerical position until Mendel graduated. The couple returned to Kansas City where Mendel began the practice of law and Sarah taught middle school in Shawnee Mission School District. They began a family, raising sons David and Michael at their home on Walnut Street. Sarah transitioned from public school teaching to child rearing and professional and voluntary service at Beth Shalom Synagogue and with National Council of Jewish Women. Sarah served as Beth Shalom Sisterhood President where she introduced the Bat Torah program of study. After teaching for many years, she became Educational Director. She also served as Chairperson of the Ritual Committee Board Member and President of Beth Shalom. Sarah worked closely with other lay leaders and the Rabbis and staff of Beth Shalom. Over forty-six years of loving and loyal marriage, Sarah served as a devoted support to Mendel and to her mother, Clara Kraft and many elderly family members. Their home was a hub for hundreds of meals and gatherings for family and friends, and as family members aged, Sarah supervised their personal needs and care. When her sons were in high school and college, Sarah earned a PhD in Education Administration from the University of Missouri at Kansas City. She then established the Center for Academic Assistance - her own business, offering tutoring and coaching to students in general studies and bar/bat mitzvah preparation. Sarah then worked in the Shawnee Mission School District where she created and directed the International Marketplace, an innovative Social Studies program of immersive experiential learning. In retirement, Sarah traveled the world, visiting nearly every country in Europe, Russia, the Caribbean and Canada and Israel. Sarah loved learning and attended programs of adult study in the US and abroad and flew to family simchas (celebrations) from coast to coast. Sarah was a beloved and respected grandmother to her six grandchildren: Aliza, Arielle, Rachel, Gabrielle, Sharone and Ilan. After Mendel’s passing in 2003, Sarah moved to Deerfield, Illinois to be closer to Michael and Sheila and their children and within close reach of David and Debbie in Connecticut and her friends and family in Kansas City. In Chicago, Sarah was active in Hadassah and served as a docent at The Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center, offering tours and instruction to school groups. She developed a wide circle of friends of many ages and spent many hours with her grandchildren. Sarah was respected for her intellect, scholarship, and leadership. Always genteel and never raising her voice, Sarah earned the admiration and affection of many of the people she met. Jewish life, learning and observance were deeply important to her. Sarah maintained a kosher home, lit Shabbat candles, and belonged to and attended synagogue throughout her life. She is cherished for her thoughtful ways, her dry humor, her good counsel, her good taste, zest for life and her grace in challenging times. Sarah was predeceased by her beloved husband, Mendel Small, and her brothers, Simon Kraft and Jacob Kraft. She is survived by her sons, Rabbi David Small and his wife Debbie Chameides of West Hartford, Connecticut, Michael Small and his wife Sheila Small of Deerfield, Illinois, and six grandchildren: Gabrielle Small and her husband Eyal Salomon, Sharone Small, Ilan Small, Aliza Small and her partner Dean Antonio, Rachel Small and her fiancée David Tramonte, and Arielle Small. Shiva information may be found at Donations in memory of Sarah may be made to: The Jewish Theological Seminary of America, 3080 Broadway, New York, NY 10027-4650 US,; Camp Ramah in Wisconsin, 67 E Madison St Ste 1905, Chicago, IL 60603,, Hadassah, 40 Wall Street, New York, NY 10005,; or a charity of your choice. To attend the funeral live stream, please visit our website. Arrangements by Chicago Jewish Funerals - Skokie Chapel, 847.229.8822,


We encourage you to share your personal condolences and stories of Sarah Leah Small below and we will share them with the family.
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Our family and I are so saddened to learn of Sarah's passing. המקום ינחם אתכם! Wishing you all comfort and strength.

David Meyer
December 26, 2022
We are sending heartfelt sympathy to Sarah's family and friends. Anthony and I were honored to meet her last spring at Passover. May she rest in peace. May her memory be for blessing.

Cindy and Anthony Tramonte
December 26, 2022
Our thoughts are with you during this sad time for you and your family.

Sheryl Levin
December 27, 2022
David and Debbie,
Our thoughts, love and prayers are with you and with your family during this difficult time. We know well how much you can provide comfort to those in need of it and are sure you are doing so for the whole Small family now. We need only to read the words written above to know that David's mother's memory will blessing so very many.

With all our love,
Glenn & Tiffany, Levi, Elijah and Aliyah Blumenstein

Glenn Blumenstein
December 27, 2022
I feel fortunate to have met your lovely Mom, in synagogue, on some of her visits to West Hartford. May happy memories help you & yours to endure this great loss. So sorry.

Barbara Nair
December 27, 2022