The world lost a great and unique man when Demetrios (James) C. Damaskos died on Saturday, Nov. 25, at his home in Bristol, R.I. Taki, as he was known to friends and family, was 93 years old. He lived in Bristol for 29 years. Prior to that he was a resident of Cambridge, Mass.
Taki was born in Newport, R.I. He grew up on the island of Skiathos, Greece, as well as in Newport and Jerusalem, R.I., where his father was a lobsterman. He graduated from Harvard University, and completed a master’s degree at Simmons College. Until his retirement in 1988, he was head librarian at Harvard University’s Littauer Library.
Taki was kind, funny, brilliant and caring. He loved life. A man of great integrity and many talents, he was a poet, dancer, translator of modern Greek poetry, chef of Greek cuisine, sometimes a basketball forward, tavli expert, magical poker player and a master of the really terrible pun. He followed Harvard football with a passion bordering on mysticism.
Taki wore clothes with way too many pockets (before it was fashionable) and filled them with red felt tipped pens and small writing pads. He had a knack for making friends; even in the later years of his life he was curious about new people and their stories. He loved to travel and lived most of the summer months on Skiathos with his wife Susan, until it was no longer possible.
Taki was preceded in death by his former wives, Antonia Damaskos and Nancy Harlow Damaskos, and his sister, Elaine Damaskos Meier.
He is survived by his wife, Susan Patterson of Bristol, his children Kassandra Isaacson (Dan), Zoe Catlin McKenzie, Nike Damaskos, Theodora Damaskos and Penelope Damaskos (Julie), and step-children Amanda Esons Sep (Selahattin), Brendan Esons (Carissa), Connor Esons (Carolyn), Leslie Harlow and Jill Harlow. He is survived by 14 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.
Please make donations in his memory to:
Visiting Nurse Home and Hospice of Newport and Bristol Counties, 1184 East Main Rd. Portsmouth, RI 02871. http://visitingnursehh.org/support/how-can-i-donate/
A memorial service will be on Feb. 24.
For details please contact Susan (401) 297-4119.