Virginia E. Tikelis, 91

Virginia E. Tikelis, 91, formerly of Haverhill, died, with her family by her side, on Wednesday, August 20, 2014.

Virginia was the beloved wife of the late Peter J. Tikelis, mother and mother-in-law to Kristina T. and Perry Hanges of Salem, NH, and devoted “Yiayia” to her cherished grandson Nicholas Hanges of Nashville, TN, and to her California grandson, Quoc Tran, and his family. Mother and “Yiayia” were her proudest titles.

Virginia was a Haverhill, MA native and lived there most of her life. She devoted her live to her family, friends and to many civic and religious organizations. As an active member of the Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Church of Haverhill, she was elected in 1976 as first president of the Ladies Philoptochos/Elpis Society when the two groups merged. She served on, and co-chaired, many committees to benefit the church and its parishioners. Her community honored her in 2005 with the Metropolis of Boston Ministry Award.

Virginia was a director of the Boston chapter of the American Society of Women Accountants, and a Director of the Stevens Bennett Home for the Aged. As a CPA, Virginia practiced public accounting for over 40 years as a sole practitioner and as a partner with William R. Shepard. Virginia was the first women to be licensed as a Public Accountant in Haverhill. She was very proud to be a pioneer entering a field previously dominated by men.

Virginia is survived by her sister Alice Papadopoulos, God children, nieces, nephews and numerous close friends. Her brother Nicholas Ellis predeceased her in 1996.

Virginia was a vibrant woman who succumbed to the ravages of Alzheimer’s. The family wishes to thank our friends and family, Caregivers, including Shirley Sylvester, Dorothy Freeman, the staff of Comfort Keepers, VNA, Hospice and especially Kathy, Armen and Kaitlyn Kludjian who helped us give Virginia comfort, dignity and lots of love and laughter in her last years and days. Virginia’s big smile, robust laughter and compassion will be very much missed.

Donations in her memory can be made to Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Church, 154 Winter Street, Haverhill, MA 01830, or the Alzheimer’s Association, Five Bedford Farms Drive, Bedford, NH 03110.

Friends are invited to the wake at Dole, Childs & Shaw Funeral Home, 148 Main Street, Haverhill between 5:00 and 8:00 p.m. on Friday, August 22, 2014. A funeral service will be held on Saturday, August 23rdat 10:00 a.m. at Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Church with internment to follow at Linwood Cemetery.