Sophie Kourakos

SCARBOROUGH – Sophie Kourakos peacefully passed away on Oct. 17, 2021, surrounded by her family at the age of 92. She was the daughter of Efstathios and Mary (Vamvakias) Demetriou.

Born in 1929 to Greek immigrants, Sophie grew up in Portland. Sophie adored her parents and the deep sense of family they instilled in her. She cherished her family life and often shared stories about picnic dinners at Kettle Cove, visiting her father’s tailor shop, and the activities of her close-knit Greek community.

Sophie was grounded in her faith, and always active in Portland’s Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox church. She started directing the church choir at age 14 and continued in this role for many years. Whether directing and singing in the choir or organizing a Philoptochos event, Sophie gave years of her time and talents to the church. In 2002, she was recognized for her outstanding service to the church and received The Diocesan Award.

In 1952, Sophie married William Kourakos and they enjoyed a loving 54 years together. She and Bill had four children whom they raised in Cape Elizabeth. They also enjoyed the company of many friends, including the fun-filled Bridge Group. The weekend trips to the lake in their camper were not to be missed.

Sophie was a devoted and loving mother who raised her kids with clear expectations to be kind and to do the right thing. Family Sunday dinners were a priority, and her kids knew better than to miss a curfew. Following her parents’ lead, she taught her children “family first” at every turn.

Sophie balanced the active life of raising children while also working at Pond Cove Elementary School running the library / media center. She loved her job and “Mrs. Kourakos” literally knew every child who went through the school during her 23-year tenure. The friendships she made continued after retirement, particularly with her adored Cape Chicks.

During their retirement, Sophie and Bill traveled to many corners of the world. She was active in the Rotarian life, and their many community events. Ten grandchildren came into her life during this time. In 1992, they lost their beloved son John, but she was still able to find blessings in her world being a Yiayia. To love Yiayia and be loved by Yiayia was to feel the deepest warmth, joy, and beauty. Most recently, Sophie became a great-grandmother.

Sophie loved to sing; she had a melodious voice and the feeling in what she sang was moving. In addition to the church choir, Sophie enjoyed the community chorus and was often asked to sing at events. She was also an accomplished artist, and she showed at many art fairs, taught classes, and became well known for her pet portraits.

During the last chapter of her life, Sophie lived at Piper Shores Retirement Community in Scarborough. As dementia took over, freeing her from life’s details, Sophie could only see more beauty and joy in the world. Unaware of the isolation from COVID, the staff and residents at Piper Shores became Sophie’s family. The Kourakos family will be eternally grateful for the devotion and care given to our mother by her Piper Shores family. We would also like to thank Compassus Hospice for their support and guidance.

Sophie’s love of life was built on the foundation of the values and beliefs she embodied throughout her 92 years. She was a very proud woman. She embraced different cultures, religions, and ways of life, and only spoke kindly of others. Lovingly direct, Sophie was not shy about voicing what was on her mind. She touched many people and was always making new friends while cherishing her long-term friendships. Sophie inspired people to be their best. She was one of a kind.

Sophie was grateful for all that God gave her and felt blessed by everything and everyone. Sophie wants you to know, “You are a blessing”.

Sophie is predeceased by her parents; her husband, William Kourakos; her son, John George Kourakos; her brother, James Demetriou and sister, Georgia Tsopelas.

She is survived by her son, William Kourakos and wife Nyssa, her daughter, Joanna Krasinski and husband Stephen, her daughter, Stephanie Flanagan and husband Dennis; her beloved sister, Sylvia Kostopoulos and husband Tony. Sophie also leaves 10 grandchildren; and one great-grandson.

The wake is at Hobbs Funeral Home, 230 Cottage Rd., South Portland from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 22 with the Trisagion service at 6 p.m. Funeral services are at the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church, 133 Pleasant St., Portland at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23 followed by the burial at Riverside Cemetery, 320 Ocean House Rd., Cape Elizabeth.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be given to the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church or the charity of your choice.

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