Mildred K. “Millie” Kartis, 89, passed away Friday morning, Jan. 10, 2020, from cardiac and pulmonary complications.
Although a resident of Virginia Beach for more than 50 years, Millie was a native New Yorker, born in Brooklyn on Aug. 4, 1930. Her father, Elias John “Louis” Karambelas was from Gytheon and her mother, Alexandra (née Kalkani), was from Polovitsa, two villages in the Peloponnesian region of Greece.
In 1948, Millie graduated from Brooklyn’s Prospect Heights High School, where she excelled in both academics and athletics. For several years following high school, she worked in Manhattan as executive secretary to the president of a major corporation. On Jan. 29, 1950, she wed James G. “Jim” Kartis, her loving husband until his passing July 14, 1994.
She left the corporate world when she and Jim began a family. She raised their four children and managed the Kartis household full time, but returned to work in retail sales, most prominently in the jewelry business, in the mid 1970s until she retired in the early 1990s.
Millie was a member of the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral of Norfolk, where she was involved with the Hellenic Women’s Club, the Philoptochos Society, and, in her later years, the Seniors group. Each year, until her health prohibited, she volunteered countless hours for the church’s Greek festival and bake sales. Throughout her life, she enjoyed baking and cooking, entertaining, gardening, relaxing in the sun, going to the beach and crabbing.
Her attributes and talents are too numerous to list, suffice it to say, she was a noble woman with a rare physical beauty, nonpareil inner beauty, emotional strength, class, culture and style who was well-liked and respected by all, not only her peers, but by those of all ages. She will be sorely missed by so many. Her passing is heart-wrenching.
Survivors include her children, Alexia, Jeannie, George and Lee; nieces, Pat Lesher (Bill), Paula Georges-Clapp (Dick), Alice Daskiewich (Stan), Ethel Lawler (Joe), Zoe Fryman (Robert) and Chryso D’Angelo (Peter); nephews, John “Jack” Georges (Cheryl), Eliot Karambelas, Paul Karambelas, George Alexander and Brian Murray; and numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grand-nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; four siblings, Chris, Ethel, Cleopatra, and Kalliope; and niece, Debra Murray.
A Trisagion service will be held at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 15, at H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts., 1501 Colonial Ave., Norfolk. A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m., Thursday, Jan. 16, at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral, Granby Street, Norfolk. Father George Bessinas will officiate. Interment will be held in Forest Lawn Cemetery
Share online condolences with the family at H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts.