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Stavroula Stefaniak passed away on February 23rd in Houston where she had lived a beautiful life. She was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother to five grandchildren who will all miss her. She is survived by her husband, Jerry Stefaniak, ex-husband Michael Lysandrou, daughters Angie Kocurek, Phaedra Rogers and stepdaughter Mary Jean Stefaniak . She will also be deeply missed by close family members such as her sister Maroula Tanos and sister-in-law Niki Stutzman.
Stav was born on November 24, 1941 in Larnaca, Cyprus. When she was 18, she came to the United States with high school sweetheart Michael Lysandrou, whom she married while they attended Indiana University. Soon after, they settled in Houston where they raised their two daughters while she earned her masters degree and worked. Stav and Jerry Stefaniak, her second husband, loved nothing more than traveling to visit her daughters, sons-in-law, and grandchildren. She was fiercely dedicated to her family and friends; she was the loving core of the family.
In addition to being the heart of her family, she was also a family and marriage therapist. She placed a great priority for people to seek spiritual help as well as counseling. She believed strongly in God and His heavenly angels as stewards to help people go through the highs and lows of life. Stav and Jerry were well known in the community for co-teaching spiritual workshops, most notably, teaching forgiveness. She helped countless people during her lifetime while she worked in hospitals as a social worker and also as a psychotherapist in private practice.
A memorial service honoring Stav will take place on Saturday, March 2nd, at 11:00 a.m at Unity Church of Christianity, 2929 Unity Drive, Houston, 713-782-4050.
Published in Houston Chronicle on Feb. 28, 2013