SEATTLE, WA – Arthur Saridakis passed away on January 18 at his residence, The Terraces At Skyline in Seattle, the Seattle Times reported on January 29. He was 103.
Saridakis was born in Price, UT, on December 20, 1919. His parents, George and Despina, were blessed with three other sons and a daughter. Arthur was the youngest.
The family belonged to the Assumption Greek Orthodox Church. They were devout parishioners, especially Arthur, who exhibited a true calling for the priesthood at an early age.
Saridakis graduated from Carbon High School in 1937. The following year, he was accepted and entered Holy Cross Theological School. He graduated and was ordained on June 19, 1944. Saridakis’ first parish was located in Holyoke, MA. His second parish was Holy Trinity Church in Pittsburg, PA.
In September, 1956, he became the first American-born Pastor assigned to Saint Demetrios in Seattle, Washington. In addition to his clerical duties, Saridakis reorganized the Youth Programs and the Philoptochos while simultaneously teaching Greek School Classes in the Church Hall as well as weekly classes conducted at two Seattle Public Schools.
Due to serious health issues concerning his voice, Saridakis was unable to continue as a parish priest. He tendered his resignation to the Patriarchate in Constantinople and was given special dispensation by the Patriarch to leave the priesthood. Now a layperson, the Archdiocese appointed him manager of the Holy Cross Bookstore.
Saridakis eventually returned to Seattle and in February, 1967, married Rose Kaloris who was the founder and owner of Metropolitan Hearing Instruments. Along with her son Jim, they fit and dispensed hearing instruments until January, 2004.
Rose passed away on June 27, 2013 and Saridakis moved to The Terraces At Skyline in late December. He attended Church every Sunday until the last five years of his life due to numerous infirmities and confinement to a wheelchair. For nearly 20 years prior he pursued his one passion. He designed and coordinated the Saint Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church Epistle Reader Program. He tutored and encouraged many of the children to read the Epistle in both English and Greek. A different individual was selected each Sunday for the entire year. Even when he was unable to attend services, he always inquired who read the Epistle and how he or she did.
During his time at Skyline, Saridakis enjoyed participating in the numerous activities provided by the facility, especially Bingo. He seemed to always win. He also enjoyed getting manicures monthly and spending at least an hour a day outside, weather permitting while drinking his favorite beverage, a ‘Double Tall Wet Cappuccino.’ It had to be wet! Saridakis loved the Seattle Seahawks and would wear his beloved #3 Jersey given to him on his 100th Birthday by his friend, Brenton Preuit. He wore it while watching every game.
These are only a very, very few memories he left us with. He was an amazing man and we were fortunate to have him for so long. Saridakis is survived by his son, George Saridakis, of Groton, MA and stepson, Jim Kaloris, of Seattle, WA in addition to his nephew, Leonidas Petsas, of Livermore, CA. Saridakis’ remaining relatives reside in Utah and California. In lieu of flowers, he requested a donation be sent to Saint Demetrios Philoptochos, 2100 Boyer Avenue East, Seattle, WA 98112. Arthur, thank you so very much for allowing us to be part of your life. We love you and we will miss you.
Funeral Services were held at Saint Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church in Seattle on February 1, along with the makaria. Interment following the funeral and makaria at Evergreen-Washelli Cemetery in Seattle.
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Published in the Seattle Times on January 29.