Helen Jean (Reader) Smith
December 4, 1937 ~ August 13, 2023

Helen Jean Reader Smith, 85, beloved wife, mother, grandmother, community member and friend to many, died in Chattanooga, TN on August 13, 2023. A graduate of the University of Chicago, Helen was a first-grade teacher in the Chicago Public Schools, a founder of the Chattanooga Jewish Day School, the volunteer coordinator for the Partnership for Families, Children and Adults, and a member of Mizpah Congregation for 46 years.

Born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, Helen moved to Chattanooga, Tennessee in 1973 with her husband and their two little girls. Over the next half century, she built a community of lifelong friends and a family of choice.  A woman of tremendous intellect and curiosity, Helen had a magnetic and inclusive personality that garnered love and admiration from all who knew her. She appreciated art and music, literature and puzzles, birds and natural beauty, a good joke and buying clothes on sale. Helen was a lover of language. She asked great questions and always ensured there was room for one more at her table. She loved and was loved deeply.  Hers was a life well lived.

Survivors are her daughters Julie Smith-Bartoloni (Guido), Boston, MA and Rachel Beltran (Jonathan), Atlanta, GA; and grandchildren Lorenzo and Tori Bartoloni and Simon and Woods Beltran.  Helen was preceded in death by her husband of 57 years, Stanley Robert Smith, and by her parents Joseph and Ruth Reader and her second mother Shirley Reader.

A service will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, August 14 at Mizpah Congregation followed by a memorial meal. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you consider a donation in Helen’s memory to HIAS or to Mizpah Congregation, or buy a meal for someone in need.

Arrangements are by Heritage Funeral Home & Crematory, Battlefield Parkway.

Funeral Home in Charge

Heritage Funeral Home and Crematory
3239 Battlefield Pkwy
Fort Oglethorpe, GA 30742
(706) 866-5400