The Jewish Observer
News from Middle Tennessee's Jewish Community | Sunday, March 3, 2024
The Jewish Observer

Obituaries August 2022

Condolences to the family of William "Bill" Drongowski, who died on June 25. He is survived by his wife, Amy Drongowski; son, Mike Drongowski (Mindy); and grandchildren, Avery Markel (Jacob) and Emma Kamrass (Jared). 
Donations may be made in Bill's memory to the South Lyon, Mich., Public Library or to Congregation Micah

Condolences to the family of Shelia Jacobs who died on July 8. 

Condolences to the family of Leslie Pearlstein, who died on July 7. He is survived by his wife, Reva Pearlstein; daughters, Jody Rapport (Yoav) and Jessica Averbuch (Sam); grandchildren, Ilan and Naomi Rapaport and Toby Rose and Dustin Averbuch. 

Condolences to the family of Susan Ruchman. who died on June 18. She is survived by her son, Jonathan Ruchman (Eileen); granddaughter, Maya Ruchman; and grandson, Ari Ruchman. 

Donations may be made in Susan's memory to the Grossmont Hospital Foundation or to Congregation Micah

Condolences to the family of Revold Shinarev, 93, of Nashville, who died on July 11. He was born on May 15, 1929. 

Condolences to the family of Bryan Stein, 48, who died from cancer on July 10, after fighting valiantly for two years against doctors' initial diagnosis. 

Born prematurely, Bryan spent his first days under a heat lamp, which may explain his preference later in life for warm weather and beach vacations. His parents impressed upon him at an early age the value of family, work ethic and a good education, as well as the joys of food and travel, all advice he heeded. 

Growing up, he was close to his siblings. He and his brother Greg shared a bedroom (Bryan had the tidy side.) and did virtually everything together. Lauren relished her role as Bryan's in-house fashion consultant. Together, the Stein kids rode bikes all over, spending much of their allowance at the comic book store, arcade or movie theater. 

Bryan worked hard to maintain supreme mental and physical well-being throughout his life. He was perpetually curious and always looking for ways to improve himself. A new recipe. A fitness challenge. A job benchmark. Bryan made it all look easy – always with a smile on his face – even as cancer made daily life more difficult. 

A graduate of St. Lawrence University, he reconnected with alum Danielle Lafave, in Charlotte, N.C., where both relocated for their first jobs out of college. It didn't take too many dates for Bryan and Danielle to realize that each was their other. Bryan married the love of his life in a beautiful ceremony months later, not far from Lake Champlain. They moved to Austin,where their daughter Sophie and son Sawyer were born. 

The family of four decided to return to Nashville in 2010 at the time of the hundred-year flood, living minutes away from his parents’ and brother’s homes. They joined West End Synagogue where Bryan had become a Bar Mitzvah and where Sophie and Sawyer celebrated theirs.   

Since Thanksgiving Day 2005 when he first became a father, Bryan embraced his charge and spent the 16 years since then passing down his considerable passions and gifts – among them, a love for cooking, the wonder of the outdoors and the rewards of staying active. Just as his parents, Rob and Carol, did for him, he encouraged his kids to live life fearlessly with character and conviction.  

Through family and friends, he leaves behind a legacy of people whose lives he touched and who will remember him as they knew him: large-hearted, with a radiant smile. 

Bryan is survived by his wife, Danielle; daughter Sophie and son Sawyer; parents, Rob and Carol Stein; brother Greg (Jena); sister Lauren (Jeff); nephews Eli and Jake; nieces Anke and Summer; uncles Richard and Gideon; aunts Elissa and Rita; and canine sidekick Maxum. 

Bryan's family expresses profuse gratitude to the many who helped, supported and provided strength throughout his treatment, including the compassionate staff at Sarah Cannon Cancer Institute and St. Thomas Midtown Medical Center, and especially Dr. Tony Meluch for his skilled oncology treatment and the concern he showed directing Bryan’s care. 

Online condolences may be offered at

Please visit and consider a donation in Bryan's name to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Jimmy Fund, Hillsboro High School Varsity Wrestling, Nashville Humane Association or an organization of your choosing. 

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Stein family. 

Condolences to the family of Jean Wallace, who died on June 12. She is survived by her daughter, Dr. Deborah (Mark) Robin. 

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