OBITUARY

Mohammad (Mo) Mehdi Milani

March 22, 1948February 20, 2021

Mohammad Mehdi Milani passed away unexpectedly on February 20th, 2021. Unexpected that a man who was so large in stature, in presence, in service to this community, in the magnitude of his mark - a man who was larger than life itself - can actually be gone.

He was born on the spring equinox in 1948 in Arak, Iran to Esmat Moshtaghi and Javad Milani-Tabrizi, a Persian rug exporter. He frequently used the Persian lunar calendar to change his birthdate and confuse his wife and children - (after spending years believing it was March 21st, he unceremoniously announced it was March 22nd one year at the dinner table.)

Mo came to the United States in 1972 to study electrical engineering at NC A&T State University. He joined Koury Corporation in 1980, and under the guidance of Joe Koury, whom he considered a second father, moved up the ranks from part-time maitre d’ at Joseph’s Restaurant in the Holiday Inn Four Seasons, to Executive Vice President for Hospitality, overseeing all hotel operations. A champion of the Triad’s hospitality, tourism, and sports business sectors for more than forty years, he was a member of the Greensboro Convention & Visitors Bureau Board of Directors, Greensboro Sports Foundation, the Greensboro Hotel Motel Association, the Triad Youth Soccer Association, Greensboro Host Committee for numerous ACC and NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments, and a member of the local organizing committee for United States Figure Skating in 2011, 2015, and 2020. He ran with the Olympic Torch for the 1996 Summer Olympics. He was instrumental in bringing the 2019 World Irish Dancing Championship to Greensboro, and instrumental in hosting international conventions including the annual High Point Furniture Market and Market America.

The absolute pride and joy of his life was his family. He is survived by his beloved wife Tammy, and his beloved children Sahar, Camron, and Oliver. His sisters who survive him are Firouzeh, Farzaneh, and Minoo Milani of Iran; nieces and nephews, Maedeh and Morvarid Sadat, Meysam, Maryam and Mohammad Mirzaei, Reza and Gholamreza Zadfar of Iran. Aslo, surviving are Tanya Morris and Stevie Fox of Stuart’s Draft, Virginia; Keelee Flehan Huggins and Logan Flehan of Knoxville, Tennessee; Allison Flehan Collins and Jonathan Flehan of Charlotte, NC; and numerous much-loved cousins and relatives. He was a Father-figure and mentor to more people than can ever be listed. Friend to all.

He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Mehri.

Mo Milani was good. He was better than good. He was decent and honorable. He was generous and compassionate. He was steadfast and self-disciplined, to a fault. He lived his life by a code of integrity so rare and so apparent; it was the first thing anyone commented on upon meeting him. He was the best of us. To have lived a life with such honor. To be so loved. What a gift he was to us all. We will spend the rest of our lives doing our best to make him proud. We will spend the rest of our lives missing him.

Mo always worried about people in the community who do not have enough to eat. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Greensboro Urban Ministry Food Pantry.

Due to COVID, a small family service will be held. In the spring, a larger ceremony will be announced to honor and celebrate his life.

Remembrances of Mo may be shared by visiting www.haneslineberryfuneralhomes.com.

Services

No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.

Memories

Mohammad (Mo) Mehdi Milani

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Nick Grindle

March 7, 2021

I was a vendor at the Sheraton for 20 years and had the pleasure of knowing Mo and interacting with him fairly often. I am so saddened to hear of his passing. My heart goes out to the family and the entire Koury Corporation. He will be missed tremendously and can never be replaced. I lost my job back in November and spoke to Mo last in early January. He was so gracious and offered such comforting words of encouragement to me, even several job leads. I am forever grateful.
Rest well my friend!

Sandra Connick

March 5, 2021

I met Mo while looking for a possible venue for the 2019 World Irish Dance Championships. He was a beautiful, genuine gentleman and an absolute pleasure to deal wit. I am very sorry to hear of his passing. Sincere condolences to his wife Tammy and all the family❤️🙏

Larry Burton

March 4, 2021

To the family I am so sorry for you`re loss I met Mo at the Jimmy V roast in the early 90`s I did not know him personally. We had dinner he asked me who I was I guess he thought who is this guy sitting at the head table. I said I will be running the scoreboard tonight we had a great dinner and talked quite a bit. still not knowing who each other really was myself anyway. the event went off without a hitch as they always did with Mo so after the event I was striking and Mo approached me and Larry would you consider going to work for me then I knew he was the man I turned him down 27 years later camron came to work at the coliseum they both touched my life in a good way. Larry Burton

Anthony Montgomery

March 3, 2021

My condolences to the Milani Family. He will definitely be misssed.

Jim Brewer

February 26, 2021

The Milani Family:
I was shocked and sorry to hear of the passing of Mo. What a great loss to the community and Family.I appreciate the friendship for many years.It was a pleasure to know him .I will be remembering your family in my prayers.

Jim Brewer
Coca -Cola Consolidated

Shelly Burnette

February 25, 2021

Mo was an outstanding very polite, and made an impact on my life. I worked at Grandover for 5 years in the cafe. I waited on him everytime he came in to eat. He was always respectful and asked me how I was doing. He will be truly missed. My condolences to the family.

Stephanie Craft

February 25, 2021


I knew Mo since I was 9 years old, with many fond memories and impressions spanning 40 years. As I know in my heart and reading others letters, there is a common thread that ties us to him, his honorable dedication as a husband, father, friend, and colleague. He was a mentor and visionary leader to all. With his statuesque physique and perceptive eyes, you knew he meant business, but with his warm heart, smile and full body laugh, he could crack icebergs. We will miss you Mo. Thank you for your talents and your wisdom that you shared with all of us. Our prayers and love go out to Tammy, Sahar, Cameron, Oliver and Mo’s family in Iran for your loss. We love you!

Susan Boswell

February 25, 2021

How do we say goodbye to this dear man, larger than life persona, faithful friend and leader? I used to be afraid of him LOL ... but over the decades, I was privileged to see him soften from being a lion to a lamb within the comfort of his family and the walls of his home. Over the more than three decades I have known him, he became someone I could always count on for sound advice and a great story. You couldn't beat his stories! I think of the time he went sky diving- strapped to a Blue Angel, no doubt- what a thrill that was for him. And how he would covertly go back to Iran to visit family and we would be so afraid something would happen to him. He left as Mo but came back dark and mysterious. I loved the stories he would tell me (he knew my love of adventure), about being in the Iranian Military, about getting a car shipped to the US and driving it all over the country the summer he came to the US... and crazy things I could never imagine being a middle class Girl from Goat Pasture Road in Davidson County. I knew he was proud of my writing- he loved when he and Tammy heard me on the radio... and he must have thought I was a pretty good interior designer, because I've done several projects for him and Tammy at their home. I mean can you EVEN imagine, coming to this country- not speaking the language, and rising through intellect and hard work to where he did? To carrying an Olympic torch in what was not even your native country? To meeting Presidents and rockstars... to becoming great friends with people of all sorts of religion from all over the world. That is a great thing I witnessed... then there was Mo and the Baptists! They loved each other- LOL! He was simply one of the most amazing people I have ever or will ever met.
RIP friend. I have been honored to know you. We love you.

Jim Tasios

February 25, 2021

It has been said that, if you have one good friend in life you are more than lucky. For more than 40 years Mo Milani, was like a brother to me. His understanding as a professional businessman and his valuable advice to me, especially at one point, if I can say, was lifesaving. The many phone calls, meetings and chats I had with Mo I will cherish for life. That said, by far, the best and most enjoyable times we had together were away from business. It was the many-many times of two and sometimes three hours relaxing and enjoyable lunches or dinners that we spent together over the years in the Triad, Raleigh, or Charlotte. Mo and I loved talking about exploring new restaurants, and new food trends. He understood and embraced the many cuisines from around the world as well if not better than a food critic. Because he was himself a home cook he appreciated better than most what it takes to serve good and healthy food. He was respectful, generous, and understanding to the hard-working restaurant staff we met over the years for the many challenges they themselves face daily in their business. Mo was very knowledgeable, a gentleman, he loved conversing with others and fun to be with. His smile was captivating.
I will miss my good friend Mo Milani! May his soul rest in peace!
My sincere condolences and prayers to Tammy, Sahar, Cameron, and Oliver. May time grant you comfort. All things are possible in life.
Jim Tasios

Amanda Nelson

February 24, 2021

I was simply a bartender for about 3 years. (2009-2012)
I truly appreciated every time Mo would walk down the hall by Connection, pop his head in, and ask "Where's the traveler headed next month?". Mo always approved my Starwood requests and would give me tips on restaurants or sites to check out if it was a city he had visited before. For someone so important in Greensboro he made all his employees feel unique and appreciated.

Rest well Sir.

FROM THE FAMILY