American Philhellenes Monument in Wilder Park, Aurora, IL | archive, community, associations


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AURORA, IL – On September 25, the American Philhellenes Monument was inaugurated at Wilder Park in Aurora in the presence of the leadership and members of the American Philhellenes Society (APS), as well as Metropolitan Nathanael of Chicago, Senator from Illinois Linda Panagopoulos Holmes and Aurora. Mayor Richard Irvin, among others.

APS President Panagiotis Nikolopoulos said, “On behalf of the Directors and Advisors of the American Philhellenes Society, allow me to welcome you to Wilder Park in Aurora, Ill., And to thank you. for your encouragement and support throughout the years.

“For more than two decades, the American Philhellenes Society has strived to cultivate and maintain the spirit of Philhellenism that nurtured a love of democracy and support for the enslaved Greek nation. Artists, historians, politicians and ordinary citizens have provided ethical and material support around the world. Some taken care of remotely; some fought on Greek soil; some have given their lives for these beliefs.

“Perhaps George Jarvis said it best: ‘Do not let America remain an indifferent spectator, among many nations, to the frightening but not hopeless battle.’

The national herald

The American Philhellenes Monument was inaugurated at Wilder Park in Aurora, Ill. On September 25. Photo: Courtesy of the American Philhellenes Society

“Since our founding in 2002, we have worked to develop and maintain the friendly relations and common goals of Greece and the United States that have existed and endured for 200 years and more. We have presented many programs and exhibitions.

“We have identified and installed a monument to Lucas Miltiadis Miller, the first Greek American to serve in the United States Congress.

“Today, here in Aurora, Illinois, we are proud to unveil and dedicate this monument to all the American Philhellenes who supported, fought and shed their blood as Greece fought for its freedom and rebirth.

“I would like to thank Peter Zouras and Z3 Solutions for their tireless efforts to bring this monument from drawings to reality… Thank you for joining us today,” Nikolopoulos concluded.

The national herald

Panagiotis Nikolopoulos, President of the American Philhellenes Society. Photo: Courtesy of the American Philhellenes Society

Greece 2021 committee chair Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki sent a letter of greetings for the event, writing: “American Philhellenes have contributed financially to the Greeks’ struggle for independence, as well as volunteering in person and ensuring political support. The work of the American Philhellenes Society helps to maintain intact the friendly relations of the two peoples, which are reflected in the monument inaugurated today; The monument, installed in Democracy Square in the Municipality of Aurora, Illinois, embodies not only the Philhellenic spirit of the past, but also the dynamic presence of the Greeks in the United States and the strong friendship and collaboration between the Greek and American peoples.

US Senator Richard J. Durbin also sent a letter in honor of the event, noting that “this gathering is a special occasion to recognize the 200th anniversary of the Greek Revolution, the great work of the city of Aurora and these large organizations involved. For decades, the American Philhellenes Society and the Greek metropolis of Chicago have provided the community with excellent historical and cultural programming. I applaud your commitment to bringing the Hellenic community together and keeping history alive through monuments like this one. Once again, I would like to extend my warmest wishes to today’s participants for your dedication to the Greek American community. Congratulations on all your hard work and accomplishments, and I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.

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