Peter Pithis passed away peacefully on Thursday, November 25, 2021, at the age of 87. Peter is survived by his wife of 56 years, Athena and children, Danny Pithis (Toula) and Kiki Costalas (George), and grandchildren Lena Costalas, Gus Costalas, and Peter Pithis. He is also survived by his sister, Mary Pittaulis (George).
Peter was born in Vrondathos, on the island of Chios, Greece. He was born a US citizen in Greece because his father had served in the US army. Life in Greece was hard in the early 1940s due to World War II. In 1946, his father, Diamandis, moved back to America with two of his children, Mary and Peter, hoping for a better life. Peter worked at various Philadelphia hotel restaurants throughout the years, where he befriended dozens of professional athletes and Hollywood movie stars. After living in Philadelphia for many years, Peter followed in his father’s footsteps and joined the US Army in 1956.
Following his time in the service, he traveled back to Chios and met Athena Batsis. The two fell in love and, within two weeks, got married in 1965. Upon returning to America, they had two children, Danny and Kiki. At that time, Peter had a produce company selling produce to restaurants in the tri-state area. Then, after the untimely death of his brother-in-law, Demitri, and nephew, Frank, he sold his produce business and stepped in to work for his sister at the OK restaurant. In 1974, he purchased the LaMode Restaurant, which he renamed after his wife, the Athenian Restaurant, located on Torresdale Avenue. After briefly selling janitorial items, he took a job as a salesman/buyer at the Cedar Farms Company, Inc. He worked there until retiring at age 62. However, retirement was not for him, so he began selling various restaurant items that he would find on deals.
Peter was a kindhearted, caring, and happy person. Up until the last few weeks of his life, he would drive around town, shop for food, and meet his friends (parea) at Dunkin’ Donuts for coffee and a donut. Given any event, he could meet and strike up a conversation with everyone there. An avid dancer, Peter was always the life of the party. His love of family and friends showed through all that he did and accomplished.
Peter enjoyed calling his children and grandchildren to chat, making sure everyone was healthy and happy. Throughout all of his life accomplishments, Peter was the proudest of his children and even more proud of his grandchildren, Lena, Gus, and Peter. They were his life.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to Evangelismos of Theotokos Greek Orthodox Church, 6501 Bustleton Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19149.