Demis Komninos

Demis Komninos
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This is a picture of Demis (Demitrios) Komninos, the first husband of my cousin Daisy. He was about five or six years older than Daisy. I don?t think he was born before 1910. The photo was taken in Thessaloniki in the 1930s. Daisy got married to Demis when I had my bar mitzvah, around 1935 or 1936. Komninos' family His family was regarded as very aristocratic here. His elder sister had married Hatzigiannakis who was a deputy for Venizelos. Hatzigiannakis had the flour-mills and was a refugee. I think the Komninos family originated from Eastern Thrace and not from Asia Minor. Daisy was very sharp. She was petite, pretty and very smart. She would go to various clubs. Komninos went frequently to the lawn tennis club. That was at Vasilissis Olgas and 25th Martiou and all the wealthy people of Thessaloniki used to go there. I don't know how or why, but my aunt went there and that's where they met. They started meeting up to go for walks. The couples then would go to Nea Elvetia, outside the city, and to Meteora. They loved each other, and got married. Daisy and Demis ran away together and got married at the Vlatadon Monastery. A priest married them there. She was baptized and converted, and until today she is a Christian. This was probably one of the first mixed marriages. The papers wrote about it then. 'Makedonia' newspaper wrote an article against the Jews. Daisy and Demis argued with the family and Grandfather disinherited her. He told her that he didn't want her again in the house, and that she should never come back again, which was a really bad thing, as things like that usually didn't happen. They were a well known family here, and people would say, 'What? The daughter of Saltiel went with the others?' At the beginning the mother of Demis didn't want her either. But Daisy could manage anything. Very quickly, only six months after, she was the most beloved. And slowly, first my aunt Lily brought her back to the family, and then my mother and Ida started seeing her again. In the end I remember that when they brought her back to the family, she kneeled in front of Grandfather and apologized to him. She got back in touch with the family around two or three years after her wedding. Demis worked at the Hatzgiannakis mills. Because his brother-in-law was the owner he had given him a job to work there. He was a good man, and had good manners. But he was a bit of a spender, quite a spender in fact. He had this idea that he came from a great family.

Interview details

Interviewee: Mico Alvo
Paris Papamichos-Chronakis
Month of interview:
Year of interview:
Thessaloniki, Greece


Demis Komninos
Decade of birth:
before WW II:

Additional Information

Also interviewed by:
USC Shoah Foundation Institute for Visual History and Education
Date of interview:

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