Loucas D. Goulatis Passes Away

PORTLAND – Loucas D. Goulatis, 85, of Portland, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Jan. 23, 2006.

Born in 1921 in a quaint village in the foothills of Mount Parnassos in Central Greece, Loucas was the youngest son of Demetrios and Aphrodite Goulatis of Amfiklia. Raised in austere settings, he experienced first-hand Hitler's march intoGreece, the horrors of “Occupation,” and the resulting starvation that decimated the population of his homeland. After the liberation of Greece inthe 1940s, he joined the police force and was assigned to serve as an aidein the Embassy of Greece in Washington, D.C., where he met and mingled with politicians and royalty.

In the winter of 1951, with a few dollars in his pocket and a several phrases of English under his belt, he made his way by train to Portland to visit his only relatives in the United States. With disarming good looks, asvelte physique, and a charming smile, he knocked on the door of his uncle and aunt's Ludlow Street home. There he found more than a warm welcome and home cooking. Drawn immediately to a young attractive woman he met that day, he eventually managed to woo and win the heart of Sylvia Blackos Vetas, who became his wife in 1953.

After a short stay in Washington, D.C., Loucas and Sylvia returned to Portland where they began their family. Eager to have a business of his own, Loucas turned to automobile mechanics -- a trade he learned in his youth working shoulder-to-shoulder with his older brother, John. Within a shorttime he was the proprietor of Louie's Chevron Station on the corner of Washington and Veranda Streets in Portland, which he ran for over 25 years until his retirement in 1986, a neighborhood fixture and a place people could turn to for honest work at fair prices. With a talent for making “something out of nothing,” Louie could easily fashion obsolete parts, and innovative solutions to problems that stymied others. From carts to cars, from washers to watches, he repaired it all, working long hours to serve his customers who considered him more a friend, than a mechanic.

As member of the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church of Portland, Louie served on the Board of Trustees and was a fixture for many years at the Greek Festival where annually he rolled up his sleeves to help skewer hundreds of pounds of shish-ka-bob enjoyed by Greater Portland community.Whether it was a stage for the Greek School play or a generator in disrepair, Louie was always at the ready, hammer and ingenuity, at hand. As member of the Longfellow Chapter of American Hellenic Progressive Association (AHEPA), Louie enjoyed the fellowship of his brother Ahepans, aswell as his association with Portland area Masons and Shriners.

A man of few words, Louie had a keen sense of humor.

Although debilitating kidney disease made it difficult for him to participate in events in the latter years of his life, he frequently volunteered to do bulk mailings from his home for his church, and often could be found in his garage tinkering under the hood of a friend or neighbor's car.

Louie was an avid reader witha thirst for works of Greek history and philosophy. He enjoyed sports, in particular Red Sox baseball. He will be fondly remembered for his sense ofstyle (including his tendency to wear competing plaids when having dressed unsupervised!), his propensity to install wheels on anything and everything that might (someday) need to be moved, and his love of sitting in his garage during his retirement surrounded by all his tools watching the world go by.

Predeceased by an infant son, and his brothers, John and Efstathios Goulatis of Amfiklia, Greece, he is survived by his wife of 52 years, Sylvia (Vetas) Goulatis of Portland; his children Connie Goulatis of Cape Elizabeth, Aphrodite (Freda) Goulatis of Windham, and Jamie and Bonnie Goulatis of Portland; grandchildren, Arianna and Katie Goulatis and Michael Giglio ofPortland; brother-in-law, Nicholas and sister-in-law, Popee Blackos of Scottsbluff, Neb., sister-in-law, Eleni Goulatis of Amfiklia; as well as nieces and nephews in Nebraska, Florida, Texas, Athens, and Central Greece also survive him.

The family wishes to thank Nurse Jeannine Lamb of VNA Hospice for the comfort Loucas received under her care, and for the guidance and tremendous compassion she offered to all as Loucas embarked on his journey home.

Visiting hours will be held Friday 5-8 p.m. from the Jones, Rich & Hutchins Funeral Home, 199 Woodford St. where the Trisagion will be held at 7 p.m. Afuneral will be held Saturday at 10 a.m. from Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church, 133 Pleasant St., Portland. Burial will follow in Forest City Cemetery, South Portland

If desired contributions may be made in his memory to:The Holy Trinity Greek School133 Pleasant St.Portland, Maine 04101or VNA Hospice 50 Foden Rd.South Portland, Maine 04106

(Portland Press Herald, 25 Jan 2006)

HCS readers may wish to view other articles and releases in our permanent, extensive archives at the URL http://www.helleniccomserve.com/contents.html.

2000 © Hellenic Communication Service, L.L.C. All Rights Reserved.