George Theofilactidis

Obituary of George Theofilactidis

George Theofilactidis fell asleep in the Lord at home on Sunday, December 17, 2023. On March 23rd of 1945, in Dipotamos, Kavala, Greece, George Theofilactidis was born with a passion to build. He was the youngest of nine children. From a very young age, George made things out of wood, and he always displayed an entrepreneurial spirit. Following his military service in the Greek Army, he came to the US by way of Canada where he had older siblings. Ever the enterprising optimist, George followed his heart to Jamestown, NY after his eyes met Kathy Tsitso's across a crowded restaurant in Toronto, Canada one Labor Day weekend. They were married a few months later in May of 1971. In the following few years, George and Kathy had three children and started El Greco Woodworking, Inc. in 1975. George read books at the Prendergast library to learn how to make furniture. In the beginning, they made custom home and office furniture, and struggled for over 25 years trying to build a business despite tremendous odds and unfortunate setbacks. When the opportunity to make baby cribs came along, George's craftsmanship and attention to detail provided the reputation for quality that launched the business in a more stable direction. He continued to work overtime producing impeccably fine wooden furniture until his 78th year. George was an unusual employer who took the opportunity to help those in need by offering more than just a paycheck. He operated his business with brotherly love, helping to support local families -- including his own. All three of his children were well educated, and all three eventually came back to work in the family business, which they own and operate together today. To know George was to know he was a Greek immigrant who loved his family, his culture, and his Church. He was proud of his heritage and devoted to St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Jamestown. He used his carpentry skills to beautify the extraordinary and beloved mid-century structure, and he worked tirelessly to help support it for over fifty years. In 2022, upon the occasion of the centennial celebration of St. Nicholas, His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas bestowed the Medal of St. Paul upon George and Kathy. An honor given by His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros, this award is the highest honor given to lay people by the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. George's deep faith in God was unwavering. George was a catalyst for giving, living, and loving. He gave with hope that others would be inspired to do the same. He lived with full commitment to the moment at hand, being the first one to step on the dance floor and, together with his lifelong dance partner, the last one to leave it. He loved people, and lifted the hearts of strangers and friends alike. George built a family. His daughter, Alexis, and her husband Todd Singleton, added Stavros, Theonas, and Melina; his son Dimitrios and his wife, Tiffany (Hayes) Theofilactidis, contributed Efstathios and Elle Sophia; and his son Lazaros together with his wife, Courtney (Bush) Theofilactidis, introduced Aristea and Aleko. Kathy, her children, and her grandchildren will receive friends on Wednesday, December 20th from 5-7pm at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Jamestown. The funeral service will take place at 11am on Thursday, December 21st also at the Church. Instead of flowers, the family suggests that friends add to George's last gesture of generosity to his beloved Church by donating to the St. Nicholas Endowment Fund. Checks may be made payable to St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, PO Box 264, Jamestown, NY 14701.
Share Your Memory of