Demetrios “Jim” Panourakis

Demetrios “Jim” Panourakis

July 24, 1920 – May 11, 2019

He was preceded in death by his parents, Emmanuel and Dorothea Panourakis; brothers, George and Constantine; and wife, Antonia.  Survived by daughters, Angie Vossos and husband Pete, Dora Bitsos and husband Paul; grandchildren: Harlan Vossos and wife, Shannon, Jimmy Vossos  and wife, Sheri, Anthony Vossos, Chrisann Lambert and husband, Rich, Tara Kosmides and husband Paul, and Annie Kosel; great-grandchildren: Elizabeth, Peyton, Lucas and Justin Vossos, Matthew and Evan Lambert, Lea, Dorie and Dimitri Kosmides, and Mia, Demi and Nathan Kosel.

The family will receive friends on Friday, May 17th from 5pm to 7pm at the West Center Chapel, followed by TRISAGION (Prayer Service) at 7pm.  SERVICES: Saturday, May 18th at 10am, St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church, 602 Park Ave.  Interment, Evergreen Memorial Park.  Memorials to American Cancer Society, St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church, or All Holy Spirit Greek Orthodox Church.


Demetrios (also called Jim by his friends) Panourakis was born in Mitilini, Samos, July 24, 1920 to Emanuel and Dorothea Panourakis. He was the third of six siblings. He knew early in life that he did not want to farm tobacco and grapes and trained to become a tailor. In 1945 he married the love of his life Antonia Evmorfoutsikou and had two daughters, Angie and Dora. He opened his own tailor- shop and was well respected and supported in his hometown. He passed on the torch by training and sharing his trade with many young men who also became master tailors, good friends and kept in contact until the end of his life.

When the economy in Greece started declining and many young people were leaving the country, his business started to suffer, and he himself sought to emigrate. His occupation and beautiful chanting opened the door to his new life. A Samoan immigrant, Gus Stratton, visiting his hometown was moved by his beautiful chanting, befriended him and promised him when returned to America he would initiate the work visa and help him move. He moved to Sioux Falls in 1961 and managed Weatherwax’s Tailor Shop bringing 3 talented tailors that had apprenticed with him. During his 40-year stay in Sioux Falls, he established himself in the community and was well respected. After retirement, he moved to Omaha in 2001 to be close with his daughter and son in law. He was an incredibly caring husband, father and a wonderful role model not only for his family but everyone that had the opportunity to meet him. Memory Eternal our dearest Father, Papou and Big Papou.


  • Tabitha Posted May 13, 2019 3:18 pm

    All the kindness he shared each time he entered our office. My deepest condolences with love and sympathy during your families time of loss. May God bless you and keep you strong in heart and prayer.

  • Debbie (Stratton) Bortnem Posted May 15, 2019 8:56 am

    My thoughts and prayers are with your family during this most difficult time. I’m saddened that my sister Diane and brothers Dave and Mark weren’t able to come visit with Jim. We were looking forward to it. Bless be his memories.

  • Taso & Tula Korovilas & Jim & Mahi Gliarmis Posted May 15, 2019 9:13 am

    Our deepest sympathies for the loss of your beloved father, grandfather & father in law. May God rest his soul. A blessed angel is with God now. May God rest his soul.

  • Mary J Stom Posted May 17, 2019 7:35 am

    I will always think of him as a kind and gentle soul and a beautiful chanter He is in God’s hand now!!! May his memory be forever eternal.

  • Emmanuel Mike Vlassakis Posted May 17, 2019 4:14 pm

    Mr Panourakis, Was one of the kindest most gentle and loving human beings on the planet. His faith and the love of God was truly immense. He had the voice of an angel and he will be missed by a loving family and many others. May God grant him peaceful rest in the place where the righteous repose and may his memory be eternal in the hearts and minds of all who loved him. Αιωνία του η μνήμη!

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