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Kanella “Kiki” Korakis Simopoulos

October 6, 2019

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Kanella “Kiki” Korakis Simopoulos, 85, passed away peacefully surrounded by her loved ones on October 6, 2019. She was born on May 6, 1934 in Kopanaki, Greece to the late Elias and Demetra Petroulias Korakis. She was preceded in death by her husband, Ted Simopoulos-aka “Ted Sims”.

Kiki migrated from her native home in Greece to Toronto, Canada in 1960 along with her parents, three sisters and two brothers leaving two sisters behind in Greece. After living in Canada for a couple of years, she was introduced by her uncle to a gentleman from the USA. Within two weeks, Kiki had a double wedding ceremony with her sister Penny and husband Andrea on October 6, 1962 and the two couples honeymooned together in Niagara Falls, Canada.

Kiki moved to Lynchburg, Va. six months after marrying her husband, Ted, to start raising a family. One of her proudest memories was July 5, 1971 on the steps of Monticello in Charlottesville, Va. when she became a Naturalized United States Citizen. She enjoyed raising and caring for her family which included being the main caregiver of her mother- in-law for over 20 years. She was the “Typical Greek Wife and Mother” and would voice her opinion abruptly and decisively whenever she felt it was needed. If she liked you, she loved you and if she didn’t, you knew why!

Kiki learned how to custom make men’s toupees carefully and meticulously. She would spend months weaving single human hairs into a scalp for many of our wounded veterans. She always enjoyed working non-traditional occupations for a woman such as construction jobs including brick laying, painting and landscaping. In her later years, she enjoyed being a caregiver to the elderly and her favorite occupation of all was babysitting her two grandchildren.

She enjoyed cooking all of the traditional Greek dishes and desserts and inviting friends and family to enjoy her meals. She was exceptionally proud of her gardening which included many of her native spices from Greece, her native fig trees along with making the local news on having Florida orange, grapefruit, lemon and banana trees producing fruit inside her home.

She was so proud of her Greek Orthodox faith along with her Greek heritage, culture and traditions that were presented to a perfect stranger as strong as they were to her family. She was a member of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Roanoke, Va. as well as a member of St. George Greek Orthodox Church in Lynchburg, Va.

Surviving are her son and daughter-in-law Peter and Frances Simopoulos, her two beloved grandchildren who knew her as Yiayia, Sotiri “Ted” and Connie Simopoulos, son, Elias “Louie” Simopoulos, sister Aspacia Rimba, sister and brother-in-law Vasiliki and Anastaso Marangos, sister Tasia Moukteros, sister and brother-in-law Panagiota and Andrea Panagiotopoulos, sister and brother-in- law Giannoula and Andoni Pallas, brother and sister-in-law Gus and Helen Korakis, brother and sister- in-law George and Kathy Korakis, along with many nieces and nephews who she loved and treasured all the great memories of being with each and every one.

The family wishes to thank all of the people who assisted in Kiki’s journey for the last 14 years battling with Alzheimer’s. A very special appreciation to all of her caregivers and staff at The Bedford County Nursing Home. Words cannot describe how much we appreciate you loving and caring for our mother as if she was your mother too! We know if it wasn’t for your loving care and support she would not have been with us the last eight years. We pray that you continue the fine care that makes Bedford County Nursing Home one of The Best Nursing Home Facilities in the USA!

Those preferring memorials, please make donations to the Alzheimer’s Association, 3831 Old Forest Road Suite 7, Lynchburg, Va. 24504 so that one day we can have a “White Flower” for the cure of this horrible disease.

Funeral services will be held at 12 noon on Wednesday, October 9 at St. George Greek Orthodox Church, 1724 Langhorne Rd. Lynchburg, Va. 24503. The Rev. Father Nick Galanopoulos will officiate. Interment will be in Fort Hill Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 10 to 11:45 a.m. prior to the funeral on the lower level of St. George Greek Orthodox Church.

Tharp Funeral Home and Crematory, Lynchburg, is assisting the family.

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