Peter (Pericles) Frangos – A proud aussie Hellene

Pericles Frangos

Peter Adamis 21 June 2014.    If I were asked to describe Peter Frangos it would be simply as being “FULL OF LIFE”.  Pericles (Peter) Frangos was born in Kandila Greece in1938, but to my four boys he was always Uncle Peter or “Barba Peter”.   All people who befriended our family became an Uncle or an Auntie out of respect to them and for their warm and sincere friendships. A complete copy of the article may be downloaded by clicking on: PETER (Pericles) FRANGOS

This article is my small way of demonstrating my sincere appreciation to a man and his family who helped me and my four sons enormously at difficult period in our lives.

Peter was no exception to the rule but with special twist that is not often found these days. Peter supported my four boys and I during some very dark periods in our lives and for that we as a family cannot thank him enough for his encouragement, wise words of counsel and for providing meals to the boys at a time when I cash strapped to make ends meet.  A proud Australian with an equal pride in his Hellenic origins. An Australian that would support local charities, RSLs, Football clubs and the local Greek community and that of the Church at Ballarat, St Nicholas.

I am not sure whether he rest of the family may not have known the full extent of his generosity and support that he gave to myself and to my four sons. I can hazard a guess that over the years his family would have realised that he was a very kind and generous personality given his “philotimos” (Philanthropic) attitude towards others. Peter would never turn a stranger away ever during the time that I knew him whilst living in Ballarat. 

I first met Peter in December 1986 when I was recently promoted to Warrant officer and posted to 2 Royal Victoria Regiment, later to be redesignated the 8/7th Battalion. At that time he owned a hotel, two hamburger cum cafes, and well known personality that often could be seen visiting the local RSL of which he was a patron and supporter of.

 At our first meeting a friendship was struck which was to remain until he passed away recently. His shop on the main street and around the corner from the RSL was always a stopover for me when I was travelling to Melbourne to pick up my four sons, David, Paul, Matthew and mark during access periods and/or when my ex wife Christine allowed it to happen. On the return trip, we would always stop at Peter’s shop and have dinner put on by Peter and sometimes by Anne his wife.

After many trips to Melbourne and back, Peters cafe had almost become a second home for us. Over time we met all of the family and I would see them grow up over the years when I would pass by to see an old Army ‘Boss’, Maurice Barwick who had relocated to Beaufort some 40 miles north of Ballarat. (Interesting enough, Maurice Barwick’s wife, Thelma was of Hellenic heritage through her Grandfather).

Although I must admit many of my military friends and non Hellenic mates have helped me enormously over the years to survive at a time when I needed support as a single father of four sons. This kindness by Peter and Anna are a testament to them both and I am at a loss at how to ever repay their kindness.

Peter also loved fishing and would delight us with his fishing stories and of the items that ‘big fish’ got away or how he caught the biggest shark ever. My four boys looked at Peter with wonder and would often ask to see the shark. Peter would take them to the refrigerators at the back of the shop where low and behold there in the freezer was a shark (or parts of it) and telling the boys that he had to shrink the shark after he dragged it of the ocean y put it into the freezer. whether my boys believed his tall fish story is another matter but t was a good fish tale at the time.

He made the best meals I have ever seen and tasted and in my book, his culinary skills were superior to that of these fancy TV chefs who prance about on TV creating emotional havoc to the participants.  You could never beat his hamburgers ever. They were so delicious you could just sit there and watch Peter create a gourmets delight that would last you all day.  I don’t know how he would do I but every time we wanted something quick or for the road, Peter would make his famous hamburgers for my four boys and eat them as we drove back home. It was ritual of sorts and one that we shall remember.

I can remember Alex his daughter getting married, Terry and Lee growing up and entering the family business  and hearing of Marika the youngest daughter travels and of her education. Anna, Peters wife was and is a lovely lady that adored Peter and we would often chuckle when she would scold Peter in the shop, while Pete would wink at us while he was being scolded.  

As I type this article, I can see in my mind’s eye Anna talking to Peter saying to him, to stop smoking and don’t forget to cut the vegetables or prepare the fish while at the same time doting on him to make sure that he was all right. On reflection I am thankful that Peter and his wife Ann brought us into their lives and made us feel a part of them. This Australian Hellenic community spirit and kindness I did not find elsewhere in my travels as a soldier and a single parent.

Peter deserves many more tributes and better written by others who knew him best and yet, I cannot say enough of the man Peter was whilst he walked amongst us alive. He was full of life, always smiling, laughing, having a joke and at the same listening to you if you had  problem.  I do hope that his journey into the next world had the almighty laughing at the stories that peter would be telling him of his many escapades and adventures during his short time with us on earth. May you rest in peace old friend and look kindly upon your family and embrace them with the umbrella of love you always had towards them.

1 Peter Adamis iconThe Voice from the Pavement – Peter Adamis is a Journalist/Commentator and writer. He is a retired Australian military serviceman and an Industry organisational & Occupational (OHS) & Training Consultant whose interests are within the parameters of domestic and international political spectrum.  He is an avid blogger and contributes to domestic and international community news media outlets as well as to local and Ethnic News.  He holds a Bachelor   of Adult Learning & Development (Monash), Grad Dip Occupational Health  & Safety, (Monash),  Dip. Training & Assessment, Dip Public Administration, and Dip Frontline Management. Contact via Email: abalinx@netspace.net.au or via Mobile: 0409965538

GREECE’S SUCCESS HAS SOME YAWNING

July 2, 2004

SOCCER MAD: Greece supporters front, from left, Peter Voterakis, Marika Frangos and Peter Frangos. Back are Terry and Lee Frangos.

IF THE staff at Ballarat restaurant P Frangos and Sons in Sturt St look a little tired this weekend, it is because they have been watching and cheering as Greece achieved what they thought was impossible.
“I’m knackered, I’ve been up for the last three weeks,” said Terry Frangos.

With a less than outstanding track record, Greece’s soccer team has won its way through to the final of the 2004 Euro Cup. Mr Frangos, along with his family, is a passionate supporter of the sport and said the odds were enormous against the team, which until now had been winless in international competition.  “Greece never won a game ever before in a tournament,” Mr Frangos said.

While Mr Frangos attributes the team’s new-found success to German coach Otto Rehhagel, father Peter Frangos vehemently claims it’s the Greek “never die” spirit which has kept them alive. The final between Portugal and Greece will be played at 4.15am local time Monday morning.  Peter and wife Ann came to Ballarat in 1968, but have never lost their love for their homeland.  The family will gather on Monday morning to cheer on the rank outsiders.  Until Monday the family said, they will be crossing their fingers.  And if the team wins, Terry Frangos said like all Greeks, they will “get drunk and dance”

http://www.thecourier.com.au/story/579791/greeces-success-has-some-yawning/

 

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