Satellite Beach, FL
James Anthony Befanis, Jr., age 89, died peacefully on April 9, 2013 in South Patrick Shores, FL, after a lengthy illness.
James was born on April 26, 1923 in Springfield, MA, to James A. Befanis, Sr., and Sophia Befanis (Haluska). Shortly thereafter, the family moved to Astoria, NY. Following high school graduation, James enlisted into the Air Force, and proudly served his country during World War II, as a 2nd lieutenant bombardier, flying seven successful sortie missions over Germany.
After the war, James returned to New York City, and married Helen Cotsores, in 1948. They were happily married until her death in 2003. James became a manufacturing furrier in New York's fur district, and operated a successful business until his retirement in 1985. He and Helen moved to Brevard County in 1994.
James was a member of this nation's greatest generation, and had a strong work ethic and strict moral values. You always knew where he stood at all times; yet James was a very sociable and kind individual, who loved to dance. He especially looked forward to attending the many senior citizen affairs held throughout Central and South Brevard County over the last nine years. He also enjoyed boating, fishing, picking produce and long Sunday drives.
James is survived by his son, Dr. Paul J. Befanis of Indian Harbour Beach, FL; and daughter, Carol O'Donnell-Befanis of Fairfield, CT. He was especially proud of their professional accomplishments, a true fulfillment of the American Dream. James was also the loving and devoted grandfather to Cristine, William and James. He simply adored them.
A viewing will be held at Beach Funeral Home at 1689 South Patrick Drive, Indian Harbour Beach, FL, on Saturday, April 13th from 10:00 to 11:00 am, with funeral services to begin at 11:00 a.m. Interment will follow at Florida Memorial Gardens in Rockledge.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations should be made to the Brevard Association for the Advancement of the Blind, 674 S Patrick Dr., Satellite Beach, FL, 32937.
Anyone wishing to share a memory, send the family a message or place a memorial donation is asked to please visit James's guestbook at beachfuneralhome.com.
Published in FLORIDA TODAY on Apr. 12, 2013