WASHINGTON (July 12, 2016) -- The American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association (Order of AHEPA), a leading membership-based association for the nation's millions of American citizens of Greek heritage and Philhellenes, mourns the passing of former U.S. Congressman and New York University President Emeritus Dr. John Brademas. He died yesterday at the age of 89. Brother Brademas, who was the first American-born person of Hellenic descent to be elected to Congress, was initiated into AHEPA Chapter 100, South Bend, Ind.
"We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Dr. Brademas," Supreme President John W. Galanis said. "Dr. Brademas was an outstanding public servant who served two decades in the U.S. Congress, and he was a passionate champion of education and the arts. Serving in these two capacities, John was a giant and an inspiration to many, especially Greek Americans, who went on to serve in public service or to work in these fields. In Congress, he ascended to a leadership position, becoming Majority Whip, which made him the highest-ranking Greek American to serve in Congress.
"In addition, Dr. Brademas was tremendous champion of the rule of law. He played an integral role in Congress' imposition of an arms embargo on Turkey in the aftermath of Turkey's illegal invasion and occupation of the Republic of Cyprus.
"Our deepest condolences and sympathies are with Dr. Brademas' family, friends, and all whose lives he touched and inspired. May his memory be eternal."
Brother Brademas keynoted many AHEPA national events, including the 1974 Supreme Convention, Boston, Mass., and AHEPA's 75th Anniversary Grand Banquet at the 1997 Supreme Convention, Atlanta, Ga. At the latter event, he spoke of his life-long AHEPA membership. He said AHEPA "has, for three quarters of a century, been the institution through which Hellenic Americans have come to play an increasingly significant role in the life of this country."