OBITUARY

Georgia Kaffatos

January 17, 1947March 5, 2019
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Georgia Kaffatos, age 72 of Sun Valley, California, after a long struggle with Alzheimer’s past away peacefully into her eternal sleep surrounded by her family on March 5th, 2019 in her home. Her Greek Orthodox Christian faith carried her from life to death, to life eternal and for that we are grateful. She was born in 1947 to the late Kostandinos and Stavroula Rizeakou in Kotrona (Flomohori), Greece. She is survived by her husband Markos Kaffatos, her three daughters, Maria, Stavroula and Dimitra, her son in law’s George, Savvas, George, her eight grandchildren, Anastasia, Georgia, George, Stavros, Georgia, Markela, Theodora, Amalia and her sister Garifalia Rizeakou. Who will forever keep her in their hearts. She was the second born of five children, whom she loved so much. Georgia worked hard from a very young age to help support her family and siblings. At age 22, in 1969 her family moved to Saco, Maine, where she worked at a clothing factory. In October, 1972 she married Markos in Athens, Greece. This is where her love story begins. During her visit to Greece from the States, her family had lined up suitors for her to meet in order to get married and one of those men was Markos. Late Friday night Markos having found out that the potential bride from America was in Greece, he got the address and went to meet her father. After meeting with him they discussed arrangements for him to meet Georgia. It was late Friday night after midnight when they went to the home where they were staying and woke Georgia up to meet Markos. She had grown weary at this point and tired. But, something was different with this man. He watched her walk across the room and having only one chair available right next to him, she quietly sat. When asked if she thought he was good for her, she answered “Yes”, and the rest is history. They were engaged the next day Saturday and the following Sunday they were married in the Church.They have been happily married the last 47 years until death did them part. In February, 1974 Georgia gave birth to Maria her first born daughter and in February, 1975 she gave birth to her second born daughter Stavroula. In 1975, Markos and Georgia decided it was time to leave Saco, Maine and headed west to California. They packed whatever belongings would fit into two large Chests, took their two small children and with $800.00’s in their pocket left everyone behind in search of a better life. With an atlas in hand they navigated cross country to California without having anyone to support them, they managed together to build a life filled with Love. Markos worked hard to support his family and in June, 1976 they were Blessed to have their third daughter Dimitra in California. With hard work and Love and and sacrifice they bought their first home in Lakewood, California in 1979. Their home was always open to everyone. She loved people and she always gave to who ever was in need. When we say gave, we mean someone to talk too, a comfort, someone without judgement. She enjoyed having a full house with friends all around her. I do not remember a weekend where she did not have people over. As, a mother there was not a night that passed, she did not stand in our bedroom doorway crossing and praying over us. I am convinced that those prayers reached the heavens. Those prayers are what kept her so strong. I see all the little things more clearly now and realize that a life well lived is a life full of LOVE. Christ tells us to love thy neighbor as thyself. This is a tall order and very hard for most of us to do. Our mother did so, not in words, but in action. We watched her drive a mother, who’s young child was fighting leukemia in the hospital, sometimes daily to see her son, because she did not drive. My mother did not hesitate. We had the gift of an adopted grandmother Penelope in our home for seventeen years. We thought this was normal and now look back and realized that this was not the norm. Most people would not take in a friend who was left alone in the condition she was in after having suffered a stroke paralyzing her right side. My mother did so. I could go on and on about the little things that were actually huge things. I will fast forward to a decade later. Where all of her and my father’s sacrifices paid off. They lived a simple life and managed to save enough to become a partner in their own restaurant. With God’s help in orchestrating the right people to cross their paths, they opened the doors in June of 1985 to Old Time Drive-In and that is where my mothers hard work ethic shined. She carried french fry boxes, made batter for onion rings, washed dishes, mopped floors all with a smile. Never complained she was tired. She cooked for an army always. She would race up to our house and grab blankets and socks to give to the homeless man walking around in the parking lot. These were her ways of following God’s commandments of Love thy neighbor as thyself. I realize that she was a constant not only in her family’s life, but in all who knew her. It was in 2008, when her diagnosis of early onset Dementia started to take hold of her. Prior, to that it was a quiet elephant in the room that we as a family endured. She was present to watch all three of her girls get married. She held newborn grandchildren in her arms, she traveled with her husband, all while battling this disease that slowly chipped away at her. All, the while being a constant in all of our lives. Her smile endured and her Love conquered and her Faith was unwavering. This is how so many people that crossed her path will remember her. This is why, it was so right that we cared for her when she needed us most. It was not perfect and it was not easy to watch such a strong woman, slowly succumb to this disease. I will not dwell on this aspect of her life. I will only say that it was an honor and a privilege for us to have had the Blessing of being her caregivers when she needed us the most. I can only cherish the memories and will leave you with a small glimpse of who my mother was. Her speech had left and she could not verbalize any longer, but she had sound mind every night before we put her to bed to do the sign of the cross. That was the last thing to go. In a conversation with my father, as tears flowed down his face, because we no longer have her here to care for, he simply told me the most comforting of things, he said “When she was no longer able to do her cross, he started doing his”. We all want purpose in our lives and my mother knew her purpose from a very young age. It was to trust in God and Love thy neighbor as thyself. Her grandchildren are a testimony to this Love. From the youngest to the oldest. She loved them with all her heart. Their souls connected, not with words but with kindness, gentleness and Love. Sweet Beautiful Kind Momma, We MISS you like no other and LOVE you with all of our hearts ! If we can accomplish a third of what you did in this life, we know paradise is waiting. Thank you for the gift of your Love and the Blessing of your life ! We will take care of your beloved Markos and you will take a piece of our hearts with you. Enjoy your eternal rewards, they are well deserved. Paradise is waiting. We will Love you Forever

Services

PREVIOUS SERVICES:

  • Visitation Sunday, March 10, 2019
  • Trisagion Sunday, March 10, 2019

OTHER SERVICES:

  • Burial
REMEMBERING

Georgia Kaffatos

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