Constantine “Gus” Constantinou was born November 9, 1933, in Philadelphia to Michael & Patricia Constantinou. His parents were both immigrants of Greek descent from Izmir, Turkey.
Gus spent his early years growing up in West Philadelphia, working at his father’s restaurant, called Atlanta Restaurant, at 9th & Race Street. He attended church at St. George Cathedral, where he was an altar boy. He had an older brother Stephen Constantinou and older sister Elizabeth (Constantinou) Masters, who pre-deceased him.
At the age of 15, in 1949, he enlisted in the US Army National Guard. When his mother and sister found out, they marched down to the recruiting station themselves, and the UN enlisted him since he was not old enough to join.
Gus graduated from Dobbins High School. In 1953, he re-enlisted in the US Air Force, where he received specialty training as a heavy transport aircraft and engine technician. He was then promoted to Crew Chief and flew in B-25s. In 1955, he was transferred to Ashiya Air Force Base in Japan and was promoted to Flight Engineer of the C-119. From there, he traveled many times to Korea and South Vietnam, where troops & equipment were transported. He returned to the US in 1957 for his discharge.
The GI Bill benefits helped him earn his FAA Civilian Aircraft & Engine License. He spent some years working as an automobile mechanic at Potamkin Chevrolet in South Philadelphia. Still, his love was always the US Air Force, so he chose to continue and, in 1976, joined the Air Force National Guard, where he gave service once a month and a couple of weeks each year. He was later promoted to Master Sergeant. In 1982, he left Potamkin and joined the US Air Force National Guard full time working as Crew Chief on A-10 “Warthogs” until his mandatory retirement in 1993 at the age of 60.
As much as he loved his career in the US Air Force, his greatest achievement was his family. He was married to his wife Anna Macrogeane of Lancaster, PA, in 1963. They met at a National GOYA convention in Memphis, Tennessee. They have been married for 56 years. They have two daughters, Patricia and Georganne. His five grandchildren were his pride and joy, Constantine, aka Dean, Alexander, Arianna, Evan & Nicholas. He was a beloved uncle and a loyal friend to many.
Gus was a fierce protector of his family and his country. He had a passion for all things aeronautical and a great deal of interest in investing and politics. He was genuine to his core and had a meaningful presence in the lives of many. He will be missed tremendously.