Wednesday, March 18, 2020

2020-21 Chapter Officers Elected

At the February 20, 2020 AHEPA dinner meeting at the Deluxe Restaurant, the following members were elected Officers and Board of Governors for 2020-2021:

Elected Officers
§  President – George J. Giovanis
§  Vice President – Anthony Koumaras
§  Financial Secretary – Dean C. Kraras
§  Corresponding Secretary – Dean Whitman
§  Treasurer – Tony Phyrillas

Board of Governors
§  Chris Wagner, Chairman
§  Frank Petrakis
§  Chris Dikos
§  Michael Chaknos
§  Christ Kraras

Sunday, March 8, 2020

In Memorium: AHEPAN George C. Yatron

George C. Yatron, 69, of Cumru Twp., passed away unexpectedly on March 6, 2020.
He was the husband of Shirleen D. (Sabalski) Yatron. Together they celebrated 41 years of marriage.
Born in Reading, he was the son of the late U.S. Congressman Gus and Millie (Menzies) Yatron.
George was a 1969 graduate of Reading High School, where he was an All-State football player. He continued his football career while playing on full scholarship at the University of Pittsburgh, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in Economics in 1973. In 1976, he completed his juris doctor degree at Georgetown University Law Center. After graduation, he served as Assistant and First Assistant Berks County Public Defender while also maintaining a private practice. In 1979, he was elected Berks County District Attorney at the age of 28. He was the first Berks County District Attorney to be re-elected to a third term. In 1983, he was nominated for re-election by both Democratic and Republican parties. He served as District Attorney until his appointment in 1991 as a U.S. Administrative Law Judge. He presided over hearings for the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review in the Social Security Administration until his passing.
George was a passionate advocate for crime victims. He served as Chairman of the Berks County Victim/ Witness Services Coordinating Committee and in 1983, he received the Crime Victims Center Appreciation Award. In 1985, the Jr. Chamber of Commerce awarded him the Outstanding Young Man of the Year. He was a member of and served as President of the Pennsylvania District Attorneys Assc. and Institute. He also enjoyed being an active member of the Pennsylvania District Attorney Assc., the Berks County Bar Assoc., Endlich Law Club, Isaac Hiester Masonic Lodge # 660, and the American Hellenic Progressive Association (AHEPA).
George was initiated into the Order of AHEPA on Nov. 16, 1980, and has been a member of the Reading chapter for the past 40 years.
In addition to his wife he is survived by his children: Christina L. Yatron of Reading and Alexander G. Yatron, fiancé of Kimberly Mangels of Huntington, NY. He is also survived by his sister Dr. Theana Yatron Kastens of Fairfax Station, VA, his brother-in-law Robert Sabalski of Reading, three nephews, and a niece.
Funeral Services will be held at Sts. Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church, 1001 E. Wyomissing Blvd, Reading, on Wednesday, March 11, 2020, at 10:00AM. The family will receive friends and relatives at Bean Funeral Home, 129 E. Lancaster Ave., Shillington, on Tuesday, March 10, 2020, from 6-8:00PM and at the church on Wednesday from 9-9:45AM. The interment will follow the service at Charles Evans Cemetery.
Contributions may be sent to the Law Foundation of Berks County, 544 Court Street, PO Box 1058, Reading, PA 19603 and to Sts. Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church General Fund, 1001 E. Wyomissing Blvd, Reading, PA 19611.
Bean Funeral Home of Shillington is in charge of arrangements; online condolences may be made at 

Monday, February 17, 2020

AHEPAN James Phyrillas featured in The Temple News

Look who was profiled in a recent issue of The Temple News, the student newspaper at Temple University in Philadelphia. James Phyrillas, a senior economics major at Temple University, started a YouTube channel with his best friend in high school. James has produced original content on the site during his four years at Temple and the channel, Schaffrillas Productions, now has over 630,000 subscribers, with several videos receiving more than 1 million views. You can read the article in The Temple News online at this link:

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

AHEPAN Lazaros Scantzos featured in the Reading Eagle

Did you see the article in the Reading Eagle about Supreme Cleaners reopening after a fire? AHEPA Chapter 61 member Lazaros Scantzos is the general manager of the Hollywood Cleaners/Supreme Cleaners chain of stores in Berks County. Let's support our chapter members when we do business.

You can read the article at this link:

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

AHEPAN James Phyrillas featured in the Reading Eagle

James Phyrillas, one of the newest members of Gust C. Kraras Chapter No. 61 Order of AHEPA, is featured on the cover story of the Business Weekly section of the Tuesday, January 21, 2020, edition of the Reading Eagle newspaper.

The story details how a couple of friends at a small Berks County high school started a YouTube channel to post videos they made at school - just for the fun of it.

The site, Schaffrillas Productions, has taken off in the past year, with more than 622,000 subscribers and millions of views on dozens of recent videos.

Pick up a copy of Tuesday's newspaper and find out how you, too, can become a YouTube star.

The article even explains where the name "Schaffrillas Productions" came from. (Spoiler Alert: Chris Schaffer and James Phyrillas are the two Antietam Middle-Senior High School pals who launched the site.)

In case you missed it, here's the link to check out the article about James Phyrillas and his growing notoriety on YouTube:

Sunday, January 5, 2020

In Memorium: Past Chapter President William Sianis

William “Bill” Sianis, 89, passed away on Monday, December 30, 2019, at Manor Care Nursing Home in Sinking Spring. 
He was born on January 3, 1930, in Reading and lived and worked there most of his life. He was a son of the late James and Fotine (Gerasemo) Sianis.
Bill graduated from Reading High School in 1948 and went on to serve in the US Army during the Korean War. He spent all of his working life in the restaurant business. He was the owner of the Mayflower Restaurant and was a longtime manager at the West Reading Diner where he worked for over 30 years.
Bill was a Life Member of the Gust C. Kraras Chapter No. 61 of the Order of AHEPA. He was initiated into the AHEPA on May 20, 1954, and was an active member of the Reading chapter for most of his life, including serving as Chapter President. Bill was also co-chairman of a successful District #4 Convention hosted by the Reading chapter. He was also instrumental in starting the Reading chapter's Scholarship Program.
Bill had an unwavering belief in God and was a lifelong member of Sts Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church, where he previously served on the Parish Council.
He was a devoted family man who loved to tell jokes, do crossword puzzles and play sudoku. One of the proudest moments of his life was taking his family on a week-long trip to Greece to honor a promise he made to his two adopted children who were born there.
Bill is survived by a son, James “Jim” Sianis of Greensboro, NC, and his wife Sarah Sianis; a daughter, Frances “Fran” Thompson of Douglassville, PA, and her husband Blake Thompson; four grandchildren Jonathan “Jon” Thompson, Zoe Thompson, Louis Sianis and Alexander “AJ” Sianis; sister-in-law, Mary Sianis of Reading and many nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, Bill was predeceased by siblings Gus Sianis, John Sianis, Christ Sianis, Stella (Sianis) Morris and Calliope Sianis.
A viewing will be held in Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church 1001 E. Wyomissing Blvd, Reading, PA, 19611 from 11 am to 12 pm on Tuesday, January 7, 2020. A Funeral Service will follow at 12 pm, with burial immediately following in Charles Evan Cemetery, Reading.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be made to Sts Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church, 1001 E. Wyomissing Blvd, Reading, PA, 19611.
Funeral Arrangements by Theo C. Auman Funeral Home (

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Zoe Thompson Awarded Power District No. 4 Scholarship

Congratulations to Zoe Thompson, who was a recipient of a 2019 AHEPA Pennsylvania Power District No. 4 Scholarship. 

Zoe was also awarded a Scholarship by the Reading AHEPA Chapter earlier this year. 

The daughter of Blake and Fran Thompson, Zoe is a graduate of Daniel Boone Area High School and is attending Lebanon Valley College.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

AHEPA Chapter 61 awards $5,000 in scholarships

The Gust C. Kraras Chapter No. 61 recently awarded a total of $5,000 in scholarships to graduating seniors of Greek descent during its annual Scholarship Banquet at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Reading, Pa. Approximately 70 people attended the event, with Brother Christ Kraras serving as Master of Ceremonies in the absence of Chapter President George Giovanis. Pictured from left are recipients Angie Miranda-Ganas, Berks Catholic High School; Eleni Sterious, Conrad Weiser High School; Zoe Thompson, Daniel Boone High School; and Anthony Futrick, Wilson High School. Not pictured is JoAnna Lee Helm, Wyomissing High School.