“Our liberty depends on the freedom of the press, and that cannot be limited without being lost.” — Thomas Jefferson, U.S. Founding Father. The Society of Epirotes “Anagenesis” and the Ladies’ Auxiliary “Souliotisses,” the Heritage Museum of Epirus and Hellenic News of America celebrated “OXI” Day on Friday evening, October 28th, 2016 at 514 Broadway (between. 29th St. & Crescent St.) in Astoria. The Epirotes Societies and Museum honored the 29th Anniversary of the Hellenic news of under the leadership of Paul Kotrotsios, Founder of the Hellenic News of America & President of Hermes Expo International.
Dr. Stefanos Foussas, president of The Hellenic Cardiological Society, was the keynote speaker. National and international leaders spoke. Over one hundred persons attended. A lavish reception of Greek cuisine followed. Political leaders and members of the national and international community gave greetings. “Oxi” Day commemorates the Hellenic counterattack against the invading Italian forces at the mountains of Pindus during the WWII.
“Greece is going through difficult paths,” explained keynote speaker Dr. Foussas. “We will find the solution and overcome our problems. I am very touched to see persons here tonight who are like my family….. October 28th, 1940, Italian ambassador to Greece, Emanuele Grazzi gave an ultimatum to Greek Prime Minister Ioannis Metaxas to surrender. He replied “Oxi” (No). The Italian troops invaded the mountains of Pindus on October 28th. The sacred soil of Marathon and the sacrifice of the immortal 300 Spartans at Thermopylae came alive in the hearts of every Greek.”
“It is now 76 years later,” he said. “What is happening in Greece? We have another German occupation. We were ruined as a nation, forgetting our language and traditions. Television spoiled our nation. We lost our fortunes. Our country has starving loans. Now, In October 2016 our country that fought for heroism, has a poor public relations image. We must persevere. We must hold on to the ethics of 1940 and set an example for future generations.”
The 29th Anniversary of the Hellenic News of America is being honored with the presence of Paul Kotrotsios, who is Founder of the newspaper and Hermes Expo International. He is from the village of Parakalamo, Yiannina, Epirus, near the Albanian border. Globalism is eliminating borders, culture and language. Mr. Kotrotsios is combating these negative effects. “We must keep Hellenism and our ethics alive,” he believes.
“The business and education sectors must help us at Hellenic News of America and the annual Hermes Expo International to keep our heritage alive. We must not assimilate. Today, more than ever, we need to work more intensively towards the perpetuation of our traditions. This is our gift to our children. I pledge to bring our children to our pride, our treasure, the Heritage Museum of Epirus. No one has what we have. Professor Nicholas Alexiou of Queens College has brought his students to visit and is here tonight.”
The museum is located on the third floor of the Epirotan Cultural Center at 2514 Broadway (between. 29th St. & Crescent St.) in Astoria. It is conveniently located 3 blocks from the Broadway stop on the N and Q subway lines.