“Lesbos Granny” Who Aided Europe-Bound Refugees Dies at 96

February 16, 2022

ATHENS — Efstratia Mavrapidou, who was part of a trio of older Greek women who gained international attention at the height of Europe’s most recent mass migration wave for helping refugees on the island of Lesbos, has died at age 96.

Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou described Mavrapidou on social media as “simple, sweet, and deeply human.”

Mavrapidou, her cousin Maritsa Mavrapidou and their friend Aimilia Kamvyssi became known as the “Lesbos Grannies” after they were photographed caring for a baby who had crossed from Turkey in a boat and landed on an island beach in 2015.

FILE – Efstratia Mavrapidou, a co-nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize sits in the village of Skala Sikaminias, on the northeastern Aegean island of Lesbos, Greece, on Oct. 7, 2016. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris, File)

The incident came at a time when about 1 million people from war-torn Syria and other countries had reached Greece, hoping to move on to seek better lives in Europe’s prosperous heartland.

The three women from the village of Skala Skamnias, and other Lesbos residents, were reportedly nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016 for the compassion they showed arriving newcomers.

Sakellaropoulou, who visited Efstratia Mavrapidou at her home in 2020, said she had been “attached to the essential things in life … and so was able to serve as a mother and grandmother to all the children of the world.”

“With her, we bid farewell to a generation that serves as an example to following generations … which generously offered kindness and help without seeking recompense or recognition,” Sakellaropoulou wrote in social media post.

Mavrapidou died on Lesbos Tuesday. Her cousin Maritsa died in 2019, at age 90.


DOHA - Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis had a meeting with the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani, on Saturday in Doha.

Top Stories


A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.


Zelenskyy Hosts Western Leaders in Kyiv as Ukraine Marks 2 Years since Russia’s Full-Scale Invasion

KYIV, Ukraine  — President Volodymyr Zelenskyy welcomed Western leaders to Kyiv Saturday to mark the second anniversary of Russia's full-scale invasion, as Ukrainian forces run low on ammunition and weaponry and foreign aid hangs in the balance.

MOSCOW - The body of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been handed over to his mother, a top aide to Navalny said Saturday on his social media account.

OXON HILL, Md.  — Former President Donald Trump cast November's presidential election as “judgment day” and declared himself a “proud political dissident” during a speech before conservative activists outside of Washington Saturday as he again cloaked his campaign in religious imagery.

NEW YORK – Greek-American Ari Raptis, Founder and CEO of Talaria Transportation, was featured in an interview in Authority Magazine (AM) sharing his insights into secure logistics.

From shamrocks to leprechaun hats to green beer, it just wouldn't be St.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.