Strato Batmanis, passed away peacefully at his home Friday, the 20th of September 2013, surrounded by his beloved wife and daughter. He was 84 years old and fought a long and courageous battle with Alzheimer's disease. |
Strato was born in Houston, on the 30th of September 1928, to the late Paul and Erato Batmanis, He graduated from Stephen F. Austin High school and studied engineering at The University of Houston where he graduated with a Civil Engineering Degree. Strato met the love of his life Christine Colias in Galveston at a AHEPA Convention. They married in San Antonio at Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Church, February 8, 1969 and have celebrated 44 years of marriage. He was a beloved husband and proud father to his daughter Virginia Ann and a lifelong resident of Houston.
Strato enjoyed his career as a Civil Engineer and Entrepreneur until his retirement. After his graduation from the University of Houston he began his career as a civil engineer starting first with the Houston Highway Department. He was part of the Engineering Design Team for the Bridge at the Houston Ship Channel and later joined the Engineering firm Bernard Johnson Corporation. Strato was a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Texas and a Lifetime Member of The American Society of Civil Engineers. His love of Nascar racing and his entrepreneurial spirit enabled him to play an integral part in the Nascar Grand Prix in Houston. Strato and his family hosted on their property the kick off for the races as the "Start Your Engines" site and later served as the hosting site for the Grand Stands where Nascar fans could enjoy the exhilarating Grand Prix races in Downtown Houston..
Strato was a pillar of the community and served his country, community, and Greek heritage throughout his life. He valiantly served in the United States Army during the Korean War. His sense of duty was a lifelong commitment. He served as an Eagle Scout for 68 years and was passionate about making a difference in the lives of America's youth through his longstanding support and leadership with the Boy Scouts of America. He stayed true to his Greek heritage and was a long time member of AHEPA, The American Hellenic Educational Progressive Organization, and served as a longtime Chairman for the AHEPA Scholarship Community. He had a strong Greek Orthodox Faith and was an active member of the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral. In addition to his church activities he loved sharing his passion for boating with the church members at the annual Clear Lake Greek picnic by giving boat rides throughout the day for all to enjoy. He was an avid boater and a certified Captain with the Houston Power Squadron.
Strato lived his life with a smile and gentle spirit and was known for his keen intellect by his friends and family. A special thank you to Sid Gerber and Associates for the care his team provided to Strato with special recognition and gratefulness to David Owusu who not only was a loving caregiver but a real buddy to Strato as they shared laughter, salutes, and memories until the time of Strato's passing. Special appreciation to friends and family for their ongoing support and prayers. A warm thank you to his physician Susan Rountree, MD at the Alzheimer's Disease Research Center for her loving care throughout his diagnosis, treatment and battle against Alzheimer's.
Strato is remembered for his devotion as a loving and supportive husband. Together he and his wife, Christine, enjoyed dancing, traveling, boating and spending quality time with family. His daughter, Virginia Ann was the apple of his eye and he cherished being a father. Strato's loving heart and strength was a positive influence in his family's life. His continuous support in cheering, guiding, and sharing his wisdom in life's decisions will live on in Christine and Virginia Ann's hearts forever.
Strato is survived by his wife, Christine Batmanis; his daughter Virginia Ann Batmanis; his sister, Elizabeth Batmanis, MD; his brother Michael Batmanis, MD; his sister in law Cynthia Batmanis; his nieces and nephews, Marika, Paul Strato, and Era; cousins, John Pappas, Ethel Radovich, Elizabeth and Don Wright; and several cousins from Thessoloniki, Greece. He was preceded in death by his parents Paul and Erato Batmanis; and his grandparents Efstrios Batmanis and Malama Batmanis.
The family would like to express a special thanks to Michelle and Pete Gerukos
Friends are cordially invited to a visitation with the family from five o'clock in the afternoon until eight o'clock in the evening on Wednesday, the 25th of September, in the Jasek Chapel of Geo. H. Lewis & Sons, 1010 Bering Drive in Houston, where an A.H.E.P.A service is to commence at quarter-past six o'clock followed by the Trisagion prayers at half-past six o'clock.
The funeral service is to be conducted at eleven o'clock in the morning on Thursday, the 26th of September, at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 3511 Yoakum Boulevard in Houston, where the Cathedral Clergy are to officiate.
The interment will follow, via an escorted cortege, at Forest Park Lawndale Cemetery in Houston. Immediately following, all are invited to join the family for a Makaria Luncheon, in the S.P. Martel Hall of Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral.
In lieu of customary remembrances, memorial contributions, in memory and tribute to Strato Batmanis, may be directed to The National Eagle Scout Scholarship Endowment, SA Director, 5322 Boy Scouts of America, 1325 West Walnut Hill Lane, P.O. Box 152079, Irving, TX, 75015-2079
Published in Houston Chronicle from Sept. 22 to Sept. 24, 2013