Peter N. Yiannos
Peter passed away at home on July 2nd, surrounded by his loving family, following a battle with thyroid cancer.
Peter was born in the tiny village of “Ayios Sostis” in Southern Greece on November 27, 1932. He attended high school in Andritsena of Olympia and graduated from an Athens high school. He arrived in the United States on May 2, 1951 as a displaced person via the Truman Doctrine, because of Communist uprising resulting in his mother’s death and destruction of their village home. He was sponsored by his mother’s brother, Peter G. Valos, who was living in Alton, IL, and supported him through his first four years of college at Missouri University, where he graduated with a B.S. degree in
Chemical Engineering. Peter and all his family were indebted to this special uncle. Peter then went on to graduate school with a four year scholarship at Lawrence University’s “Institute of Paper Science & Technology” in Appleton, WI, (which is now part of Georgia Tech) and specialized in the pulp and paper industry, receiving both his MS and PhD. He was then employed by Scott Paper Company for more than 35 years, and advanced rapidly in various positions, retiring in 1994 as Vice President in Technology. He distinguished himself in the management of both product and process development. He had numerous publications, both technical and non-technical, and 3 significant patents.
In 1962 he married Stella Baziotes Yiannos and since then they have been residing in Wilmington, DE. Peter used to joke that he had 1 job, 1 house and 1 wife! He was a unique species!
Peter was a civic minded person who never skipped voting since 1956 when he became a U.S. citizen. He supported the candidates of his choice, especially at the federal level.
He was dedicated to his job and to the people that he worked with. In the late 60’s he took a two year leave of absence from Scott and taught engineering at Widener University, while consulting for Scott Paper.
Peter was always interested in education and was the Chairman of the committee for the afternoon Greek School at Holy Trinity Church for many years. He also taught Sunday School at Holy Trinity.
Also, he was very active in various industrial organizations like American Chemical Society, AICHE – American Institute of Chemical Engineers, TAPPI – Technical Association of the Pulp & Paper Industry, and worked for the advancement of his profession thru these organizations. He received many awards and held various positions in TAPPI.
During his retirement, his interest in education continued and he became more active in AHEPA – American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association, AHI – American Hellenic Institute, Hellenic University Club, AFGLC – American Foundation for Greek Language & Culture, and Tri-state AFGLC. As president of the tri-state group, he helped establish the Interdisciplinary Center for Hellenic Studies (ICHS) in 2001 at the Richard Stockton College in New Jersey, which has evolved to five professorships in Hellenic/Classical Studies. Along with his wife, Stella, they have donated the professorship of “Greek Language & Literature”. He strongly believed in classical education causes.
Peter was also a founding member and supporter of the Odyssey Charter School in Wilmington, DE and was very proud of its ongoing success.
His support for educational causes was an expression of his philanthropic values.
He always wanted to do something in memory of his mother’s oldest brother, Vasilis Katavelos, who drowned in the Titanic in 1912. In June of 2001, he and his spouse on behalf of all the families, sponsored a marble monument in his hometown, bearing the names of the four young villagers who were coming to the U.S. for better fortune. The project was a tremendous success.
For a number of years Peter and Stella have been enthusiastic supporters of the
Mt. Lykaion excavation in Greece by the universities of Arizona and Penn.
Recently the University of Missouri honored Peter by making him a member of the Order of the Golden Shillelagh.
He has written his autobiography for his children and grandchildren.
Peter is survived by his spouse Stella, his children Nikos (Lisa), Daphne Skoutelas, Demetrios (Tanya), and 9 grandchildren; Caliope, Stellanie & Marina Yiannos; Panos, Charissa & Ariana Skoutelas; and Panos, Kyra & Evie Yiannos. Two brothers – Demetrios of Athens, Greece, and Leo Yannopoulos of Pittsburgh, PA and many nephews, nieces and Godchildren that he was close to. He was predeceased by his parents Nicholas Yannopoulos & Lambrini (Katavelos) and three brothers Georgo, Christo and Vasily – all of Athens, Greece, and his son-in-law Tony Skoutelas.
There will be a viewing on Thursday, the 5th of July from 6 to 8pm at the MCCRERY & HARRA FUNERAL HOME at 3924 Concord Pike, Wilmington, DE 19803. His funeral will be held at the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church, 808 N. Broom St, Wilmington, DE 19806, on Friday, the 6th of July at 11am – with a viewing at 10am at the church. Burial will be in LawnCroft Cemetery, Linwood, PA
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations either to the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church or the Odyssey Charter School, 201 Bayard Ave., Wilmington, DE 19805.