Like all rehabilitation periods, grief is a time of patience and discovery. It provides reflection on the past, acceptance of the moment, and creative thought for the future. It allows family, friends, laughter, memories, and tears to bring us back to strength and steadiness, and it gives us time off from being perfect. At the same time, grief catapults change, forcing us to face pain at its source and find a way to move forward. We will never be the same as before, but we just may be stronger.

One day, we all have to deal with the loss of a loved one and unfortunately I was recently reminded of it with my own experience of losing my father. A beautiful eulogy was written for his passing, shared below

A Driver’s Final Journey…

Today we bid farewell to Sotirios “Sotos” Floris, our adored husband, father, brother,
grandfather, friend and countryman on his final journey.
We reflect on the life of a truly great man and the moments we shared together.
A distinguished man who lived his life with great dignity and infinite strength.
We remember his kind heart and generous spirit – his love of his fellow man, his
laughter and great sense of humor. He was the life of the party.
We celebrate his strength and his passion for life, a better life, one that he preserved to
achieve.
Born 96 years ago in the tiny village of Karyes, which held his heart until today, he was
one of five children that together would survive everything.
A lover of all things – nature, music and discovery lead him to the wheel of a bus –
where his legend would begin…
With laughter, music and storytelling he transported his countrymen and women, family
and friends, from place to place, with a smile on his face and love in his heart. Making
the journey always memorable and perhaps softening one’s reality even for a brief
moment.
His love of his birth place was evident in the many terms that he served as President of
his village, working diligently and tirelessly to improve his beloved community and
bringing joy always to young and old alike.
As many might remember, on one special Christmas he used his battery from his bus to
light up the town square Christmas tree (an anecdote that he very much enjoyed
telling). His love always surpassed his immediate circle and he could always be counted
on in one’s time of need.
His work ethic was unparalleled, a true family man who always put his family first. What
some might not know is that the best part of his trip was always coming home to his
beloved wife of sixty five years, Georgia, and beautiful daughters Litsa and Lena.
His love of community extended far beyond the village starting with the neighboring
village “Geraki” that stole his heart and expanded to the “Big Apple” where he watched
his grandchildren grow up: learning how to speak English and use the subway system
with his eldest and first grandson, Stratos, shopping with Vivia at Bloomingdales and
enjoying lunch at Forty Carrots, joyously applauding at Eirini’s ballet recitals, and
watching airplanes with his youngest grandson Manolis, who would then become a pilot
and follow in his footsteps.

Papou, we want to thank you for your unconditional love and sing softly to you, one of
your favorite choruses, ”Γεια σου μάγκα σ’ αγαπώ”, and to tell you that you will always
be the driver of our hearts and minds, watching us from above and guiding our
footsteps.
αιώνια μνήμη –May your memory be eternal.
Sotirios Floris is survived by his wife Georgia Floris, daughters Litsa Floris and Lena
Maninakis ,his sister, Dimitra Matsoukas, his four grandchildren and two great
grandchildren.

September 4, 1921 – January , 2018
Karyes Laconia

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As it is a difficult time, here are some practical tips on dealing with grief and loss of a loved one

  • Make arrangements ahead of time
  • Invite friends and family of your loved one
  • Share personal stories and give people the chance to say something short and sweet
  • Prepare money holders and thank you cards for the church
  • We the Greeks emphasize celebrating someone’s life, encourage your loved ones to do this
  • Instead of flowers dedicate some time or money to the charity of your loved one

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Friends and family,

We would like to take a moment to thank you all for the overwhelming outreach of sympathy and condolences extended to our family at this time.

In his memory and to honor the life he lived, we have established a fund for a museum dedicated to his hometown, Karyes, that he loved so much.

 

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