Athanase CAMPOURIS (1891-1973)My maternal grandfather Athanase CAMPOURIS was born in Aivali (now Ayvalik) in Asia Minor, June 28, 1891.
Asia Minor (now Anatolia Turkish) was the westernmost peninsula of Asia and called by the Romans to differentiate the continent Asia Major.
As throughout the region, the Greeks were predominant in Aivali. A census in 1917 reported a population of 25,000 Greek Orthodox for 89 Turkish Muslims.
He is the son of Penelope ZOUMI and Eustrate CAMPOURIS and is the oldest of four children.
The 14-18 war breaks out and will tear the region since the Dardanelles is a strategic issue. The Greek part of the Triple Entente along with France, the UK and Russia, while the Ottoman Empire is committed to the German Empire in the Triple Alliance.
And it was during this period that the Ottoman Empire will start to exterminate the Armenians and Greeks who inhabit this region.
At this time Athanase was sergeant in the Greek army and his family will be deported and exterminated by the Turks in 1917 as reported in dispatches from press agencies. This genocide lasted until 1923 in general indifference under the command of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, Defense Minister of the Ottoman Empire and the first President of the new Turkish Republic in 1923. According to some figures 1,500,000 Armenians and 500,000 Greeks were exterminated
The only family he will have is that of his uncle, Spiros CAMPOURIS, doctor, refugee to Mytilene.
Also, after the war he decides you into exile to the USA to build a new life but the immigration quotas are exceeded ... it will be France.
In Paris, he met Marie Girot who was waitress, born in Romilly sur Seine in 1900.
They first married religiously according to the Orthodox rite 18 September 1927 at St Nicholas of Ermoupolis Syra (Syros Island in the Cyclades in Greece).
Then they will have a girl Helen born in Tinos (Cyclades Greek island) October 4, 1929.
They decide to move to France and marry civilly so - secular state requires - August 18, 1932 in Paris XV. He will take the french first name of Robert, translation of Athanase.
They founded a hair salon at 22 Rue Valadon Paris VII that will experience some success
and enjoy life with their daughter punctuated by frequent trips to Greece.
His wife died February 10, 1964. He will then share his time between his apartment Vesinet (Yvelines) near his daughter and her family and his home in Gif sur Yvette (Essonne) in the garden where he grows fruits and vegetables.
His heart is fragile and it is returning from a medical consultation during which the cardiologist urged him to "stay in bed until further notice", he dies of a heart attack, on public roads, in front of his home October 29, 1973.