Rabbi Yonason Kantor zt”l


candleIt is with great sadness that we report the passing of Rabbi Yonason Efraim Kantor zt”l of Lakewood, NJ. He was 54.

Reb Yony, as he was known, was a beloved member of the Lakewood community, recognized for his ahavas haTorah, ahavas habriyos, and avodas Hashem. Reb Yony was a dear friend of so many people, truly meurav im habriyos, while serving as an example in Torah, avodah, gemillus chassodim, bitachon and emunah.

Reb Yony grew up in Monsey, where his esteemed father, Rav Yisroel Meir Kantor, serves as the rov of the Agudas Yisroel of Monsey shul on Remsen Avenue.

Reb Yony worked as a senior mashgiach for the Orthodox Union, with a focus on wine production, and his mentchlichkeit, ehrlichkeit and thorough knowledge of the field and the halachic details stood out, garnering him the respect and admiration of everyone he came in contact with.

Reb Yony battled illness during the last period and succumbed, plunging his family and numerous friends into mourning.

The levayah will take place at noon at the Israel Henry Beren Hall Dining Room of Beth Medrash Govoha at 617 Sixth Street in Lakewood, NJ.

Reb Yony is survived by his wife, Mrs. Sara Kantor, and one child; his parents, Rav Yosef Meir and Rebbetzin Chana Kantor; his siblings and extended family; and his many grieving friends and acquaintances.

Yehi zichro boruch.

{Gavriel Sitrit-Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Such a special person!! A Heart of Gold!!! He came from one of the largest families in the Torah world. (His mother Rebbetzin Chana Kantor was a Hess.) But that never stopped him from widening his circle of those he considered like family, and treating them like long lost brothers. I’m an out of towner (midwesterner is the name). The last time I saw him was at his son’s upsherin a few months ago. He was sitting surrounded by his friends so happy at that simcha, even though he didn’t have the strength to stand.

    May he be a meilitz yosher for his wife and little boy, his parents and siblings, and his thousands of friends around the world.

  2. Much sadness in my heart. We at E & J Gallo Winery Fresno truly enjoyed his enlightened understanding of the difficulties in kashering at a large commercial winery. He worked diligently to provide the mashgiachim and the Winery workers the knowledge to successfully produce Kosher materials. We will miss him. He taught this gentile a lot.

    Brad Asher
    Tech Mgr
    San Joaquin Valley Concentrates

  3. Much sadness in my heart. We at E & J Gallo Winery were truly glad to have the pleasure of working with Yoni. His enlightened approach to helping us in the kashering at a large commercial winery was much appreciated. He went above and beyond providing the Winery workers and the mashgiachim the knowledge to successfully produce Kosher products. We will miss him. He taught this Gentile a lot.

  4. I think it should be noted that Reb Yoni worked for the OU for many years. During this time, as he became the head Mashgiach of OU wine production, he established himself as a world renowned wine and grape juice expert. This was only one of the many ways he selflessly and with great mesiras nefesh served Klal Yisroel. Yehi zichro boruch!

  5. I work as a Rabbinical Field Representative for the Orthodox Union/Kashrus Division. As a field representative, I am assigned to a certain territory and need to deal with various companies in different industries. In my 20+ years of doing my job, kosher wine production was never one of my assignments. That changed three years ago when a company decided to do kosher wine in my territory. I was clueless about how to go about this, halacha l’maaseh. I was referred to Reb Yoni. Even though it was his shana rishona, he gave me app. three hours of his time, spread across four phone calls. His desire that the production be done strictly lamehadrin was apparent. However, his intricate knowledge of the process enabled him to give me ideas to ensure that the process went smoothly for me. Bein adam lamokom coupled with bein adam lechaveiro. No coincidence that in today’s parsha we read the Aseres Hadibros which also couples the mitzvos bein adam lamakom and bein adam lechaveiro. Yehi Zichro Baruch!

  6. Yoni was a very special person, I remember 32 years ago when he danced at my wedding with such simcha. He was loved by everybody that he came in contact with. Yoni allways had a smile on his face. Just being in Yonis presence made you feel good. There was something about him that resonated. Yehi Zichro Baruch

  7. Uncle Yoni, it is months after you’r petirah and i still feel tears well up in my eyes as I write. I miss you dearly, and feel a void with you in our family.