Rebbetzin Nechamah Tzipah – Sophie Goodman, one of the earliest Shluchos and Mechanchos in the United States, passed away on Monday, 26 Tishrei, 5778.
Rebbetzin Nechamah Tzipah Goodman, also known as Sophie, was the fifth of nine siblings who were raised in a home imbued with mesirus nefesh by their parents Rabbi Shmaya and Etta Krinsky in Boston in the early years of Yiddishkeit in America when doing so was considered impossible.
She passed away in her sleep in Ashdod, Israel, early Tuesday morning, at the age of 95.
A woman of great refinement and of few words, Mrs. Goodman would tell her einiklach of her richest memories in her parents’ threadbare but always happy and boisterous home. The siblings attended Boston Latin School and Hebrew Teachers College, and supplemented their own Torah learning with much learning with their father, who always made time to learn with his children regardless of his busy schedule.
The Krinsky children would also sing niggunim for many hours.
As one of the only strictly adherent families in the area at the time, the Krinskys would regularly host rabbanim and other distinguished individuals, some of whom would stay on for weeks and even months.
Trusted and sought after by Rabbis Soloveichik, Eliezer Silver and more, Rabbi Shmaya Krinsky was a shochet of renown with impeccable yiras shamayim and unyielding standards of kashrus, something for which he lost multiple jobs, refusing to compromise one iota of any halacha in shulchan aruch. This chinuch was evident in Mrs. Goodman, who was both learned and meticulous in being mehader in mitzvos and minhogim.
Reb Itche der Masmid would stay at the Krinsky’s when he would visit from Europe and Mrs. Goodman and her siblings had the honor of assisting and serving him. Reb Itche, who was known to have an extremely high standard of chumros in kashrus and would rarely rely on others, trusted their kashrus standards implicitly. She would tell how he’d sit all night with his feet in a bucket of cold water to help him stay up and learn.
After marrying one of the first ten temimim in America, Rabbi Yehoshua Nachum Goodman, in 1947, the young couple was sent by the Rebbe Rayatz to a rabbanus post in Lancaster, PA and later to New Haven, CT, where they were both deeply involved in chinuch. The couple eventually moved to Chicago, where Rabbi Goodman served as the principal of the city’s frum girls’ school, mashpia of Anash, and more. Throughout, Mrs. Goodman was involved in N’shei Chabad, and supported her husband’s communal roles in myriad ways, while raising her family. A model of yiras shamayim, strong emunah and bitachon, Mrs. Goodman would complete her davening and shiurim in the first hours of her early rising.
Along with her learned and respected husband, Mrs. Goodman was steadfast in her determination to raise her family in the ways of the Rebbeim. Though they suffered a number of great personal tragedies, the couple never drew attention to themselves and always focused on others, leading both by their aideleh example as well as with their strong yet discreet community involvement. Despite their modest wages and way of life, Rabbi and Mrs. Goodman liked to give secretly to people they knew were going through hard times. Rabbi Goodman would quietly leave an envelope of cash under their door or find other ways in which to help people without them ever knowing the source.
The couple was once even audited by the IRS because the amount of charitable deductions on their tax return was most unusual. But Mrs. Goodman kept meticulous records and held on to all the receipts. So when she showed them to the agents they threw up their hands in admiring ‘surrender,’ and expressed admiration both for her record keeping as well as their tzedaka giving.
Their own home was also open to one and all, who could inevitably be served a warm meal which somehow always just happened to have been made anyway. Chasidim and shluchim of the Rebbe like Reb Mendel Futerfas, Reb Shmuel Dovid Raichik and Reb Avraham Drizin would stay in their home when traveling for the Rebbe’s inyanim.
Along with her husband, Mrs. Goodman raised her children to go out on the Rebbe’s shlichus.
Rabbi Goodman passed away on 13 Elul, 5756.
Mrs. Goodman is survived by her brother Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky, sister Mrs. Yocheved Goldberg, and children, Mrs. Brachah Devorah Leah Shmotkin of Milwaukee, WI; Rabbi Shneur Goodman of Ashdod and Mrs. Sarah Hazan of Rome, Italy, many grandchildren and great-grandchildren ka”h and talmidim and talmidos around the world.
She was predeceased by her siblings Rabbi Velvel Krinsky, Mrs. Rivka Hecht, Rabbi Moshe Krinsky, Mrs. Chava Shusterman, Rabbi Yosef Krinsky and Rabbi Pinchas Krinsky.
The levaya took place in Ashdod, Israel.
Baruch Dayan Ha’emes – Nechamah Tzipah bas Shmaya.