Obituaries - RALLIS, MOURAD, PROUSIS nee HARRIS, RIGAS, SEFERLIS, SIMONS (Symeonides), TARATSIDES, TREFONAS, TSIBOUKAS nee SIKARAS, VLANGAS, ZACHARY (Zacharakopoulos), TREFONAS - The National Herald, March 18, 2006

The following obituaries and articles were published in the March 18, 2006 issue of The National Herald, with their kind permission I am providing them as a possible tool for Hellenic genealogy research.


Former Prime Minister of Greece George Rallis Dies of Heart Failure at 88 Years of Age

George Rallis, a former Greek Prime Minister and foreign minister, who monitored Greece's accession into the European Economic Community died this past Wednesday, March 15, from heart failure at age 88. 

The son and grandson of two Prime Ministers, Mr. Rallis was first elected to the Hellenic Parliament in 1950. He was first given a ministerial post in 1954 and served at various times as minister of state, transportation and public works, public order, education, interior and foreign affairs, before taking over as Prime Minister in charge of a New Democracy government from 1980 to 1981. 

He studied law and political science at the University of Athens, from which he graduated in 1939. He served the Greek Cavalry in Albania during the 1941 ItalianGreek war, and later also served the Hellenic Army during the Greek Civil War. 

As a close collaborator of the late Prime Minister, Constantine Karamanlis, he participated in the founding of the National Radical Party, ERE, in 1956. He resigned from ERE's 1958 government, along with 14 other members of Parliament over a disagreement with Mr. Karamanlis on electoral legislation. He was suspended from ERE, to which he returned in 1961. 

In 1967, as public order minister of the last pre-dictatorship government of Panagiotis Kanellopoulos, Mr. Rallis solicited the help of the Greek military stationed in northern Greece against the colonels. That effort failed, and he was arrested on April 21, 1967 and placed under house arrest for two months. He was later exiled to the island of Kassos until September 1968. 

After the democracy was reinstated in 1974, he became a leading member of New Democracy and successfully monitored the accession of Greece to the European Economic Community in 1978. 

When Mr. Karamanlis became President of the Hellenic Republic in 1980, Mr. Rallis became Prime Minister, during which time Greece returned to NATO for the first time since the 1974 Cyprus invasion. He served as prime minister until 1980, when Andreas Papandreou's socialist party, PASOK, first came to power. 

Mr. Rallis returned to the Parliament in 1990 but resigned in 1993, after a disagreement with then Prime Minister Constantine Mitsotakis on the Skopje issue. He returned to the party in 1997, under then ND Party Chairman Miltiades Evert. 

Mr. Rallis authored several books on politics and Modern Greek history. Condolences were sent by President of the Hellenic Republic Karolos Papoulias, Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, Hellenic Parliament Speaker Anna Psarouda-Benaki and the main opposition leader, PASOK Party Chairman George Papandreou, among others. 

The above incorporates information from reports posted by and the Athens and Macedonian Press Agencies.


Mourad, John H. - Age 87; of Racine, WI. Services were on Friday, March 10; died March 4. During World War II he served in the Greek army. He was employed by J.I. Case Co. for 25 years, retiring in 1982, and was a member of the 20 Year Club. He was a member of the Kimissis Theotokou Greek Orthodox Church. Survivors include his wife, Morfia; his son, Bill Vasilios Mourad of Racine; a brother, Sava (Despina) Arapoglou of Kozane, Greece; a sister, Mary Arapoglou of Kozane, Greece; and two grandchildren. Memorials are suggested to the Kimissis Theotokou Greek Orthodox Church. The Maresh-Meredith & Acklam Funeral Home, in Racine, handled the arrangements. For information, call the funeral home at (262) 634- 7888.


Rigas, Leo A. - Age 76; of Pine Brook, NJ; a service was on March 11 in St. George Greek Orthodox Church, Clifton, after the funeral from Shook's Cedar Grove Funeral Home in Cedar Grove. Mr. Rigas, who died Wednesday, March 8 at home, was a truck driver for Schmitt Builders of Secaucus for 30 years before retiring in 1990. Most recently, he was a bus driver's aide with the Kevah Konnor Bus Co. in Pine Brook for three years. He served in the Army during the Korean War. Born in Holyoke, Mass., he lived in Jersey City and Fairfield for 25 years before moving to Pine Brook five years ago. Surviving are his wife, Frosine; a daughter, Stella Blake; a son, Andrew; brothers, Ted Rigas and Alec Waddleton; a sister, Leona Rizzo, and six grandchildren.


Seferlis, Antonia B. - Age 100; died March 3 after a brief illness, surrounded by her loving family. She was born in Plattsburgh and was a Syracuse resident most of her life. Survivors: two daughters and a son-in- law, Angeline Booras of New Hartford and Sandra and Paul (Lucky) Grigoriadis of Syracuse; six grandchildren; and five greatgrandchildren. She was predeceased by her husband, William G. Seferlis, and a daughter, Georgia P. Seferlis. Services were on Tuesday, March 7 at St. Sophia's Greek Orthodox Church. Interment: Oakwood Cemetery. Arrangements entrusted to Chase Funeral Home Inc.


 Simons, Artemesia (Symeonides) - Born near Sohoum, Georgia (Russia) on August 2, 1908. Scarred by the ravages of war in 1922, she became a refugee with the rest of her family and moved to Greece. She was married in Greece to Symeon Symeonides. Her legacy of indomitable faith in God, and taking care of her family shall live forever with all those who were for tunate to have known her. She left an indelible impression to all with whom she came into contact. Alone, widowed by a Carbon County mine explosion, pregnant with a fourth child, in a strange land, battling extreme hardships, ignorance, and prejudice, she worked very hard to raise a family within her most precious Greek Orthodox faith. Her awesome inner strength provided her with the courage to deal with all the blows that life has dealt her; she was challenged beyond endurance and she endured. Her constant companion was her beloved special son Fotios with whom she spent most of her life. In our mind they became the dynamic duo that protected each other from birth to death. May her Pontian spirit; her Greek ethic; her Orthodox faith; and, forthrightness be a great beacon to her progeny and to all those whose life she has touched during her ninety seven plus years. Everyone that came into contact with her profited from her will to live, her will to protect her children, and her uncompromising demand for integrity in her relationship with others. We shall treasure every moment we spent with her. Her spirit and her advice shall always be with us. She will eternally live in our hearts and minds. We shall always be inspired by her life accomplishments; we shall treasure the values we were lucky and privileged to receive from her. We remember with fondness her passion for gardening and her award winning yard. As we go through our journey of life we shall always be guided by her faith, unquestioned honor, and single minded integrity; we shall always remember the sparkle in her eye. She entered eternity in her sleep on Tsiknopempti, February 23, 2006. She is now resting in God's bosom. Preceded in death by her parents, husband, sons John and Fotios. Survived by children Despoina (Norris) Struck, George Simons, Sophia (Nick) Colessides; grandchildren John (Michelle) Struck, Dimitri Struck; Mark (Lynne) Simons, Leslie (Don) Faught, Amy (Don) Jennings; great grandchildren: Alexis, Yianni, and Zoe Struck; Katrina, and Elissa Simons; Connor Crozier; Alexandra Ward, Grace Jennings; numerous nieces and nephews in Greece. Special friends Tina Katis and Jon Anast. The family appreciates the services of the Brighton Gardens in Salt Lake and Colorado Springs, and the hospice service, who assisted Yiayia in her final days. Funeral service was on Monday, February 27, 2006 at Assumption Greek Orthodox Church, Price, Utah. Contributions suggested to be made to the Assumption Greek Orthodox Church, P.O. Box 688, Price, Utah 84501


Prousis, Marion (nee Harris) - Beloved wife of the late Kay (Kyriakos)Prousis; loving mother of Michael (Stephanie) Prousis, Danae (Dennis) Rasor and Theo (Betty) Prousis; proud grandmother of Alexis, Melli, Samantha and Anthony Prousis, Katie, Greg and Becky Rasor, James and Andrew Furdell; dear sister of Helene (the late Savas) Georgiou and the late Dorothy (the late Ted) Kotsakis; sister-in-law of Elena and Patricia Proussis. Visitation was on Tuesday, February 14 until time of funeral service in SS. Peter and Paul Greek Orthodox Church in Glenview, IL. Kindly omit flowers. Memorial donations may be made to Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine (for Alzheimers research), 710 N. Lake Shore Dr., Chicago, IL 60611.


Taratsides, Panagiotis. - Died on March 11. He gave 38 years of service to St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, in Baltimore; beloved husband of Athena Taratsides, devoted father of George Taratsides and Despina Hiotis, dear brother of Anatoly Stelios, loving grandfather of Athena and Philip Hiotis. Relatives and friends gathered at Charles S. Zeiler & Son in Baltimore on Monday, March 20. Further visitation was held on the following day with service immediately following at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, 520 S. Ponca St. Trisaghion. Services were held on Monday.


Trefonas, Louis Marco Dr. - Age 74; loving husband, father, grandfather and brother, passed away Thursday, March 2, 2006. He was born in Chicago, IL to Peter and Eugenia Trefonas. He was a renowned Professor of Chemistry and former Vice President of Research & Graduate Dean at UCF. Louis is survived by his wife of 48 years, Gail Trefonas, Rhododendron, OR; son and daughter-inlaw, Peter and Heidi Trefonas, Medway, MA; daughter and sonin-law, Stephanie and Nick Keller, Castro Valley, CA; daughter, Jennifer Trefonas, Seattle, WA; son and daughter-in-law, Mark and Monica Trefonas, Sandy, OR; son and daughter-in-law, Paul and Randi Trefonas, London, UK; son and daughter-in-law, Jason and Elisabeth Trefonas, Jackson Hole, WY; eight grandchildren: Alexa, Alexander, Andrew, Brandon, Payton, Peter, Sierra and Tiffany; one brother, Peter Trefonas and one sister, Katherine Stathakos both of Chicago, IL. We love you and will miss you. Wake was on Sunday, March 12 at Salerno's Galewood Chapels. Services were on Monday, March 13 at Saint Basil Greek Orthodox Church in Chicago. Father Chris officiated. Interment 1:30 p.m. Elmwood Cemetery, Chicago, IL.


Tsiboukas, Dimitra (nee Sikaras) - Beloved wife of the late Nikolaos; devoted mother of Maria (Peter) Koutsopoulos and Theodora (Algis) Deckys; fond grandmother of Andrea (Chad) Smith, Dimitra (Kevin) Bullens and greatgrandmother of Ryan, Kevin and Daniel; dear sister of Nikolaos (Angeleki) in Greece, Frank (Helen) and Bill (Pota) Sikaras; dear aunt of many nieces and nephews. Family and friends met Monday morning, March 13 at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Chicago, for funeral service. Interment Elmwood Cemetery. Arrangements by Hellenic Funeral Service (Nicholas M. Pishos Funeral Director) (773) 745-1333.


Vlangas, James William. - Died on March 8; loving husband of Rosemarie; devoted father of Georgette E. Vlangas, Louis J. Vlangas, Jamy A. Bosey and the late William J. Vlangas; father-in-law of Joanna Vlangas; dear grandfather of David J. Updegraff, Amanda Brannock, Ronald C. Moore, Thomas G. Hare and Stacey A. Hare; great-grandfather of Alexandra Vlangas-Perry, Austin Hare, James and Hailey Moore and Griffin Brannock; brother of Helen Gretes and Alexander Vlangas. Also survived by several nieces and nephews. Friends called at the family owned Ruck Towson Funeral Home in Baltimore on March 11 and 12, where a Trisagon Service was also held. Mr. Vlangas was laid instate at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of the Annunciation, on March 13, with funeral service. Interment Greek Orthodox Cemetery, Windsor Mill Road.


Zachary, (Zacharakopoulos) John G. M.D., Ph.D. - Age 94; beloved husband of Pota, nee Yakas; loving father of Connie Turos and George Zachary; proud grandfather of Nicole (Manuel) Marin, Michelle Turos, Dannai Turos, Destenee Zachary, Joey Turos, Tamara Turos, John and Zachary; cherished greatgrandfather of Emmanuel, Ryan, Danielle, Arielle and Valerie; dear brother of Maria (Marinos) Kormas and the late Licourgos and Panos Zacharakopoulos in Greece. Dr. Zachary, an Orthopedic Surgeon, practiced medicine for 51 years in Greece, Illinois Masonic and Swedish Covenant Hospitals in Chicago, retiring in 1988. Visitation was on Tuesday, February 18 at the Smith-Corcoran Funeral Home in Chicago, IL. Funeral was on Wednesday, February 15 from the funeral home to St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church in Chicago for funeral service.


 Louis Marco Trefonas, Scientist, Researcher and Professor, Dies at 74

By Amy C. Rippel ,Orlando Sentinel

Louis Marco Trefonas was a scientist by profession, a chemistry professor and researcher whose work can be seen throughout the University of Central Florida. 

But his other passion - the arts - created what some might consider an usual marriage of the concrete and the creative, his friends and family said. 

Trefonas, 74, a former UCF vice president for research and graduate dean, died last Thursday, March 9, in an Oregon hospital. He retired from UCF in 1999. 

He was a chemist who, at one point, collaborated at Harvard University with a former mentor, who went onto receive the 1976 Nobel Prize in chemistry based partly on their work. And he loved nature and the arts, shown by his support for UCF visual arts and his instrumental role in establishing an arboretum at the school. 

"He brought a needed sense of creativity to the University of Central Florida that he repeatedly demonstrated in his commitment to all of our research programs," Rusty Okoniewski, a close friend who worked with Trefonas at UCF, told Trefonas' son-in-law Nick Keller. 

"Although science was certainly his first love, I will always remember his strong desire to foster the arts on our campus as well. His legacy can be seen throughout UCF." 

Born in Chicago, Trefonas married his love, Gail Thames, in 1957. 

In 1954, Trefonas earned his Master of Science degree from the University of Chicago and went onto complete his doctorate in chemistry in 1959. He took his first teaching job in 1960 as a University of New Orleans chemistry professor. He later served as the school's chemistry chairman. 

In 1972, Trefonas took a sabbatical to spend a year in research at Harvard, his family said. 

In 1980, Trefonas moved to Central Florida to work at UCF. His family and friends said he worked to bring research groups to the UCF Research Park. 

"He is best known for his study on the molecular structure of compounds used in cancer research, and for his long affiliation with the American Cancer Society, Center for Research and Education in Optics and Lasers, Florida Solar Energy Center and the UCF Arboretum, which he co-founded," his family said in a written statement. 

UCF Art Professor Walter Gaudnek said Trefonas always took a personal interest in the arts program. "That's a blessing," he said. 

Trefonas was a longtime member of the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Maitland, Florida. 

He is survived by his sons, Peter of Medway, Massachusetts, Mark of Sandy, Oregon, Paul of London and Jason of Jackson Hole, Wyoming; his daughters, Stephanie Keller of Castro Valley, California and Jennifer of Seattle; his brother, Peter, and his sister, Katherine Stathakos, both of Chicago; and eight grandchildren. 

Pishos Galewood Funeral Chapels, Chicago, handled the funeral arrangements. 

The Orlando Sentinel Published the above on March 12. The original headline is, “Scientist Louis Trefonas Left Legacy During his Two Decades with UCF.”