Anastasia Alafogineas Katsekes was born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1925. Her parents, George and Sophia (Machos) Alafogineas, were both immigrants from Greece. Ann was the youngest of six children, and the only sibling born in a hospital.
Ann grew up in downtown Chicago, where her family lived and owned a restaurant called The Bluebird a few blocks away. As with many immigrant families from Greece, her family life was everything to them. She grew up in a loving, close-knit family that valued hard work, and their Greek Orthodox faith. Her parents insisted that their children speak English in their home. When she attended school, she would ride a streetcar or rollerskate.
Ann met her future husband, Tom, at a funeral in Chicago. A year later in 1952, they were married and she moved to Milwaukee where they lived until she moved to Pella in 1997. While living in Milwaukee, she and Tom built their home, where they lived for 33 years and raised their daughter, Paula.
Although she aspired to be a nurse, she worked as a secretary for the State of Illinois and Wisconsin. When her daughter was born in 1961, she retired to stay at home and raise her. She returned to work with the State of Wisconsin in the Milwaukee Public School system when her daughter was in 7th grade. She loved her job and continued to work until her husband died in 1995. In her free time Ann volunteered many hours at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, where she was a member of Philoptochos, and spent many hours baking Greek pastries.
Upon moving to Pella, to be closer to Paula, Jeff, and Katie, she embraced the town immediately. She donated her time to many community organizations including: St Nicholas Orthodox Christian Church, Pella Christian Grade School, Pella Regional Hospital gift shop, quilting at Third Church and Peace Lutheran Church, Opera House, Kinship (Jump for Kids), The Well, and Welcome Friends.
Many people in town knew her as “Nana”. This was a direct reflection of her constant presence in the lives of her daughter Paula and her family.
Those left to cherish her memory are her daughter Paula Allen and son-in-law Dr. Jeffrey Allen of Pella, and her grand daughter Katie Allen Jethwa and grand-son-inlaw Dr. Krishan Jethwa, and great grand daughter Lily Rowe Jethwa.
Ann was preceded in death by her loving husband Tom, and her siblings: Bess, Ethel, Julia, Jim, and Rena.
In lieu of flowers, donations to St Nicholas Orthodox Christian Church.
St Nicholas Orthodox Christian Church