NEW YORK – Demosthenis Vasiliou, 91, of New York, New York, passed away on April 11. He was born September 22, 1928, in the small farm town of Skala, Laconia, Greece. After serving in the Hellenic Armed Forces, he immigrated to Montreal in 1955 where he began working in the restaurant industry. In 1959 he married the love of his life, Katina Sarantopoulos, his wife for over 61 years who was also from Skala, and they immediately started their family. In 1968, Demosthenis and his four children immigrated to New York, a place he would call ‘home’ for the rest of his life.
Demosthenis always valued hard-work, commitment, and responsibility. He owned and operated several successful restaurants in Canada and New York, and during his retirement enjoyed farming olives, oranges, and lemons in his hometown of Skala. Being a very proud Greek, Demosthenis was the Founder and President of the Evrotas Laconian Association of America and Canada, an organization dedicated to preserving the heritage and culture from his hometown region.
Ultimately, Demosthenis’ true passion was his family. He loved spending time with his children and grandchildren, encouraged them to dream big, celebrated their successes and milestones, as well as debated them on Greek and American politics. He was a man with a big spirit, and an even bigger heart. Words can’t describe how much he will be missed by his family.
Demosthenis is survived by his wife, Katina; his children, Athanasia ‘Stacy’ Koutsogiannopoulos, John D. Vasiliou, Peter (Vicky) Vasiliou, and Georgia (Paul) Diamantis; his grandchildren Martha (Paul) Petrakos, George (Brittany) Koutsogiannopoulos, Dimosthenis Koutsogiannopoulos, Anthony Vasiliou, Demosthenes Vasiliou, Katina Vasiliou, Cosmas (Chrysanthi) Diamantis, and Christina Diamantis; and his great-grandchildren Mason Koutsogiannopoulos and Demetra Petrakos.