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John was a very outgoing and socially embracing person. Full of life. He had the good fortune to meet people from all walks of life. From many presidents of countries, to homeless people. Yet he treated them all with respect and dignity no matter who they were.
He helped and cared for endless amount of people. From providing shelters excess materials from his clothing factory for the homeless, to assisting newly arrived immigrants get an apartment or vouch for them at immigration hearings.
You see, John came from a family that was 3 times displaced ( Asia Minor, Egypt exodus of late 50’s and the Zimbabwe conflict in the 70’s) He came to think that money was a temporary and transitional tool. He never let money rule his decision making. He believed however that wealth was accumulated by helping others. He felt that if one was blessed with health, and good fortune, he /she should pay it forward if they can. That was the right thing to do! This was Johns mission in life. He would spend endless hours sharing his technical knowledge on a subject to someone who wanted to learn. There are many people on all 5 continents that have stories to share about how he helped them in a time of need. Lending money to buy a car so that they can go to work. Putting a down payment for an apartment for their family to live. Assisting and even sponsoring more that half a dozen people get their green cards are just a few of many examples.
John lived a full life. He traveled the world and loved to learn about and from other cultures. He was always there for his parents and siblings. He made sure to safeguard his children and loved his family endlessly. His namesake grandson Yanni was his world to the very end. He actually did not leave this world until Yanni came from Georgia Tech to see him and they can have a proper embrace and express their endless love for one another. Only then did he feel complete enough to pass on.
He loved Philadelphia, his home since 1992, and more importantly the St. George community. This was his home. He worked the festivals and helped with Church activities and chores. This was his sanctuary and he knew one day he would return back to St. George and Philly.
After his wife passed away in 2015, and while now living with Holly and Phillip in Atlanta, he spent a lot of quality time with his beloved grandson Yanni and his Daughter in law Holly who he called “my beautiful daughter Hollaki”. When his son Dimitri also came to live in Atlanta (from Phila) a year ago he was feeling that the family was back together again and complete.
A day did not go by that he did not kiss the picture of his late wife Eleni, whom he missed a lot. Unfortunately the progression of his dementia accelerated in the last year and began the demise of physical abilities until the end where his quality of life and dignity where depleted.
He will however be loved for the man he was for 80 full and robust years on this earth. He lived life to the fullest, very few people knew that he suffered from a congenital optic nerve disease that had him classified as legally blind. Instead of using it as an excuse , he always figured out how to live a full life and thrive in spite of it.
John Sporidis was a man with a huge heart, a tireless worker, a story teller full of hope for the future and love for his fellow man. He will enrich paradise with his presence just like he left this world a better place.
He will surely be missed but never forgotten.
We are blessed to have called him our father.
St. George Cathedral
256 South 8th Street, Philadelphia PA 19107