In Memory of Konstantinos "Gus" Vardakastanis

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The loss of one of the most stand up and rock solid contributors and members of our community saddens and angers the entire Haight Ashbury Neighborhood Council membership. Our hearts and condolences go out to Georgia, Dimitri, Bobby and the whole Vardakastanis family.

Gus: Comrade. Compassionate. Driven. Tireless. Assertive. Peaceful. Scrapper. Intelligent. Political. Generous. The Haight Ashbury was his home base, his grounding. He made an investment not just for his livelihood but in this community and became an anchor for so many of us; a common glue that permeated the neighborhood. Every time you engaged him you felt his roots here.

 

Gus was always there when you needed him. He never said no to a request that was reasonable and he supported the 'hood.

It is not enough to say, pedestrian safety is one of the most pressing issues of our time here in San Francisco.

Hundreds of neighbors came to an impromptu neighborhood vigil for Gus in front of the Haight Street Market on Saturday night, September 23. Well over a thousand attended his memorial on Thursday night, September 28, at Holy Trinity Church, and the church was also packed for his funeral the next day.

We all wish Gus was still with us. The best we can do is to be like Gus: speak the truth, and be good to each other.

Safe passage and peaceful journey, Gus.

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