The woman believed to be the eldest Greek in Western Australia – if not in the entire country – passed away on Monday, at the age of 110.
Born in a small village in Kymi, Evia, on 30 November 1906, Eleni Stamelos was the tenth of eleven children, having five brothers and five sisters.
Her story is the story of Greece, during times of turmoil. She lived through the Balcan Wars, the destruction of Smyrna, two World Wars and the Civil War.
During the German occupation, she helped her husband, Dimitris, hide Italian soldiers from the wrath of the Nazis.
The couple migrated to Australia in 1968, settling in Perth, where they worked in hospitality, setting up fish and chipperies. They had four children – three sons and a daughter. Helen was fortunate to see twelve grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren, who were all with her, during her time in aged care, up until the final moment of her life.