Trisagion at 10:30 a.m.
Katherine “Kay” Manos Leventis was a kind and loving Christian; a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother; a loyal and wonderful friend to all. Kay passed away peacefully on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 14, 2023, for her eternal resting place in God’s love reuniting with her beloved family and friends.
Kay, as she was known by many, was born on March 26, 1927 in Greenville, SC, to loving parents, George and Bessie Manos. Her parents immigrated to the US from Greece (her father from Sparta, and her mother from Karyes – a village 20 miles away). Kay graduated from Greenville High School in 1944. She was always very athletic, excelling on the Greenville HS basketball, volleyball, and tennis teams, and was voted “Most Athletic Girl”. She was honored to be asked to join the Professional Women’s Tennis League. As good an athlete as she was, she was an even better vocalist and pianist. Kay completed two years of study at Wesleyan College in the School of Fine Arts and was a featured soloist and pianist in many productions.
While visiting family in Charleston on a school break during the summer of 1946, Kay met and fell in love with Andrew P. Leventis, Sr. They were engaged in July 1946. They were married the following year in Greenville, after which they moved to Charleston to start their family. They raised their four children, Peter, George, Andy, and Lynda, in Charleston until 1966 when they moved back to Greenville.
As a first-generation Greek-American, Kay was bilingual and saw to it that her children learned to speak, read, and write Greek. She was a devout Greek Orthodox Christian and enjoyed serving, teaching, and supporting the Church in both the Greenville and Charleston parishes. She sang in the church choirs, taught children’s Sunday school, served as church Youth Group Leader, was a Cub Scout Den Mother and Leader, and served in many Leadership roles in the church including President of the Philoptochos and Daughters of Penelope. Kay was also a founding member of the Greek-American Society, for which she served as President. She regretted that she “might not” be able to help at this year’s Annual Greek Festival an event that shares the Greek culture, food, faith, music and dance to thousands of people in and around Greenville.
Kay served as PTA President in Charleston at James Simmons Elementary School and Rivers High School, and in Greenville at Wade Hampton High School. She held many offices in the PTAs, including President and Secretary. She enjoyed serving in many civic organizations. Kay worked in support of the USO in Charleston and in Greenville. She supported the Shriners Children’s Hospital and the American Red Cross. Her proudest civic accomplishment was leading the effort to restore the Dock Street Theater in Charleston, SC. Kay, along with one of her closest friends in Charleston, Anna Latto, worked together to champion the effort to restore the Dock Street Theater to its original charm, which today serves as a featured historic venue during the annual Spoleto Festival.
Kay absolutely loved music. She found joy in singing – especially opera and singing in the church choir, and was an accomplished pianist. She continued to find peace and comfort in playing her piano, a high school graduation gift from her parents.
Kay is survived by her children, Peter A. Leventis (Lynette), George A. Leventis (Phyllis), and Lynda Leventis-Wells (Alan); and nine grandchildren, George A. Leventis, Jr., Christopher G. Leventis (Hillary), Victoria Leventis-Shew (Jason), Katherine D. Leventis, Katrina Wells Curlee (Will), Jonathan A. W. Wells (Michelle), Andrew P. Leventis, III (Katie), Jason A. Leventis (Elizabeth), and Stephanie Leventis Diaz (Rudy). In addition, Kay was blessed with sixteen great-grandchildren, AJ, Alexandra, Livie, Kate, Reeves, Tristan, Lainey, Katelyn, William, Collyn, A.P. IV, Madison, Luca, Isla, Kosta, and Kai.
Kay was predeceased by her beloved parents; her husband, Andy; her youngest son, Andy Jr.; and her two brothers, Peter G. Manos and James G. Manos.
A visitation with the family will be held Wednesday, May 24, 2023 from 9:30 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. at St. George Greek Orthodox Church with a Trisagion at 10:30 a.m. The funeral service will follow at 11:00 a.m. and burial will be in Springwood Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please consider pledging a gift in Kay’s memory to the Philoptochos or the Daughters of Penelope in care of the Saint George Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 406 N Academy St, Greenville, SC 29601, or please take a moment to share a story or experience you had with Kay for her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren to learn more about the wonderful person Kay Leventis was, the lives she touched, or the good work she did. Friends are encouraged to share their favorite memories of Kay with the family by clicking on the button labeled “Leave A Message, Share A Memory” below.
On behalf of our family, we want to thank you for being such a great friend to Kay.
To quote Mom’s words as she was leaving, “Be Good, I Love You Honey!”
May her memory be eternal.