To the Editor:
I can only echo the accolades accorded Giannis Antetokounmpo, a true Hellene, by the National Herald, for his outstanding life’s journey from a struggling immigrant in Greece to one of the world’s premier athletes, and applaud the wonderful coverage accorded Gianni by your publication.
His accomplishments in the face of an arduous life’s path and his ability to stay grounded and modest is not only a testament to the Hellenic virtue of philotomo that he so well embodies, but also, I might add, to the guidance and tutelage of his Greek-American agent, Alex Saratsis, who not only discovered this great talent but has nurtured that talent while also mentoring Gianni to remain true to his roots and not get enveloped by the sudden rush of fame and money.
I am most especially proud of the Order of AHEPA, which recognized Gianni’s accomplishments as early as 2015, with the awarding to him of its most prestigious award, the Harry Agganis Award, given to the Most Outstanding Worldwide Hellenic Athlete (and the repeat awarding of that award in 2017). AHEPA not only recognized his outstanding athletic accomplishments, but that he was symbolic in a sense of the journey of so many, Greek immigrants to these shores that of an immigrant assimilating and becoming a proud and productive representative of his or her new found home, and of the diversity and openness that the modern AHEPA domain and brand extols and embraces.
Very truly yours,
Gregory J. Stamos
Chairman of the Athletic Awards, Order of AHEPA