Patricia (Panayiota) Zambukos Spiros was born on Nov. 12, 1939 in San Francisco, CA to parents John and Anna Zambukos, and died on Apr. 2, 2021 at her home in Martinez, CA at the age of 81. Patt is survived by her loving husband of 54 years, Andrew, her children Athan, Jonathan, and Rebecca, son-in-law Todd Hoyer, and grandchild Joanna. Her extended family includes her brother Ted Zambukos and his wife Sharol, nephews and nieces, and many cousins, godchildren, and koumbari.
Patt was a faithful Greek Orthodox Christian and long-time member of the Ascension parish in Oakland, CA. She served as the Secretary to Parish Priest, Fr. George Vlahos in the 1960s. Andy and Patt were founding members of the Resurrection Greek Orthodox Church in Castro Valley, CA, in 1971. At both parishes, Patt gave many years of service as a Sunday School teacher and volunteered at the Greek Festivals and with various youth programs.
Patt was a graduate of Holy Names High School and Holy Names College in Oakland, CA. She was passionate about teaching children, worked for over 30 years as a paraprofessional teacher's aide at Pacheco and Valhalla elementary schools, and ran the reading program for students who needed extra help. Patt was an avid reader throughout her life and would often be reading up to 20 books at a time. After they retired, Patt and Andy would travel twice a year to Ashland to enjoy the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and she loved sharing her reviews of the plays with family and friends.
Patt was dedicated to supporting her children throughout their lives and was an active PTA mom, sports mom, band mom, and manager of the Concord Blue Devils baton twirling corps where all the girls knew her as "Mama Spy". Patt loved cooking and entertaining and ran her own catering business for a number of years. All family occasions were special when Patt planned them. She was famous for elaborate Easter dinners where she prepared an abundance of delicious Greek food, family favorites, and the latest gourmet recipes she was trying out.
One of her most favorite roles was as yiayia to Joanna (14). She enjoyed spoiling her grandchild with an abundance of gifts on all occasions, took care of Joanna when she was an infant, and provided after-school care during preschool and elementary school. All friends visiting Patt's home commented on her "Joanna shrine" of photos throughout the house.
Everyone remembers Patt as being quick to laugh, a joy to be with, and almost always with a glowing smile on her face. She was one of the kindest and most generous people you could meet. She always had a gift ready for every occasion and acquaintance, especially friends' children. With her as your friend, you had a friend for life.
May her memory be eternal.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to honor Patt to the Ascension Greek Orthodox Cathedral Choir or the Resurrection Greek Orthodox Church Capital Campaign or the Alzheimer's Association.
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