Honoring the Life of Sylvia Mehasby Representative Jim Costa
Posted on 2013-03-18
in the house of representatives
Monday, March 18, 2013
Mr. COSTA. Mr. Speaker, today, along with my colleague, Mr. Nunes, we
pay tribute to the life of Sylvia Mehas who passed away on March 9,
2013 at the age of 94. Sylvia will be remembered in the hearts of many
as a passionate woman who loved her heritage, family, and faith.
Sylvia grew up in an immigrant family that was from a small village in Greece. Her roots were from the old country; therefore, strong values and morals were instilled in Sylvia early on. Sylvia knew the importance of hard work, and she understood that a little tough love was necessary every once in a while. Her children: Tulla, Peter, and Georgia, appreciate their mother for the lessons she taught them and for the principles that are now ingrained in them.
Sylvia was married to her late husband, George, for over 53 years. Together, they [[Page E323]] were very involved in their church, St. George Parish. George served as a President, and Sylvia taught Sunday school, and served on the parish council for five years as Treasurer and Vice President. In addition, Sylvia was a founding member of the church choir. She sang in the choir for 25 years. Sylvia's Greek Orthodox faith was the foundation for her life, so she cherished the opportunities she had to serve at the church.
Fresno's Greek community was an integral part of Sylvia's life. She was co-chair of the Annual Grecian Food Festival, chair of the Greek Community Booth for Passport Fresno and Downtown Fresno Centennial, and she was a member of the Daughters of Penelope, where she served as President and District Lt. Governor.
Civic engagement was also very important to Sylvia. She served on numerous boards and committees. She was a past President of the Federation of Republican Women and an elected member of the Republican Central Committee. Sylvia was proud of her beliefs, but she was not against hearing other peoples' thoughts and arguments. She was happy to sit and talk with anyone. Sylvia served on the Fresno Grand Jury, Fresno County Solid Waste Committee, Fresno City Urban Design Task Force, Fresno City Citizen's Commission, Fresno County Reorganization Committee, and Fresno Chamber of Commerce Legislative Committee and Local Government Committee.
Beyond her participation in the community, Sylvia also ran two successful businesses with George. The Fresno Malt Shop and the Athenian Restaurant were staples in downtown Fresno. Sylvia and George worked hard to keep them up and running because they understood the important lessons they were teaching their children about hard work.
Mr. Speaker, it is with great respect that I ask my colleagues in the House of Representatives to join Mr. Nunes and myself in paying tribute to the life of Sylvia Mehas. Sylvia's leadership, guidance, and kindness will be greatly missed by many.