PORTIS, Leonidas ‘Louis Port’

Peacefully, at Victoria Hospital, in London Ontario with family by his side, on Sunday, February 25, 2024, Louis passed away in his 98th year. Loving husband of Dimitra for 69 years and father of Christos (1961), Thomas (Christina Michalopoulos), Fotina (William Comrie) & Chris (Janice Spakowski).  Cherished Papou of Liah, Kaylen, Trinity, Demetria (Sia), Kyriaki, Thalia, and John (2001). Beloved son of the late Fotini & Christos Portis.  Dear brother of late Sofia Panosopoulos (late Ken), late Koula Georgakopoulos (late John), late Basile Portis (late Fotena), late Thomas Portis (Athena), and Aristotle Portis (Barbara).

Louis was born on July 20, 1926, in Pentalofos, Kozani, Greece.  He met the love of his life, Dimitra Simopoulos from a nearby village Agia Sotira.  They married on December 25, 1954, and together they embarked on a remarkable 69-year love story.  Like many immigrants during this time, they set their sights on Canada for a better life.  On July 9, 1955, they arrived in Halifax on the Queen Frederica Ocean liner. They then travelled to Fort William, Ontario to start their new life.

Louis was a long-time restaurant entrepreneur with a strong work ethic and family values.  He was outgoing, charismatic, hardworking, honest, and an extremely generous man to all his family and friends. In 1960, in partnership with his brother-in-law Ahelias (Heli) Metsopoulos purchased the Embassy Grill in Thunder Bay, Ontario which they operated together until 1974.  In 1968 with a partnership of four, he expanded to open a second Embassy Restaurant in Wawa, Ontario.

Louis was a member of the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Thunder Bay and spent countless hours volunteering and spearheading charitable events for his church and the community.  He enjoyed the outdoors, good conversations with friends and family, and was known for his exceptional culinary skills.  Even in his 90’s, there was no stopping him from dancing a good Greek “Tsamiko”.

Louis will be remembered by his nieces and nephews along with their children including many relatives and friends.

Visitation will be held at the Logan Funeral Home, 371 Dundas St., London Ontario on Wednesday, February 28, 2024, from 6 – 8 p.m. (Prayers at 7 p.m.).

Funeral service will be conducted on Thursday, February 29, 2024, at 11:00 a.m., in the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church, 131 Southdale Rd. W. with Father Konstantinos Chatzis officiating. Interment in Woodland Cemetery.

Those wishing to make donations in memory of Louis, can donate to the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Thunder Bay or a charity of their choice.  Online condolences can be expressed at www.loganfh.ca

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  1. To the Portis Family: So sorry to hear about Louis’ death. He truly was a gentleman.

  2. To Louis family; Send heart felt condolences and prayers for your loss. Louis will be missed by all that knew him. He was truly a kind and caring man. Louis Kiousis and Kim
    P.S. Louis Kiousis received his first paycheque in Canada in 1964, from Louis Portis

  3. Nick Alexopoulos & family

    With deepest sympathies to the Portis family on the loss of your husband, father, grandfather, and uncle.
    Louis was a well-respected business man and set the tone in the restaurant industry in our community of Wawa.
    Thinking of you all during this very difficult time of immense loss.

  4. Louis was practically a member of the Rotary Club of Wawa when they were meeting weekly for their lunch meetings in the
    Embassy’s room in the rear. He did a masterful job of barbecuing a pig for an important Rotary gathering, among other things. His wife Tina looked after the luncheons so well that the club honoured her with a Paul Harris Fellow. If Louis had remained in Wawa he would no doubt have been made an Honorary Member of the club. He was charming, entertaining and we knew that he could dance up a storm, given the opportunity. Our sympathy to the family. Louis was everyone’s friend.

  5. Louis was indeed your quintessential ambassador for Wawa.
    I first introduced to Louis when the Northern Affairs office was opened at 37 Broadway Ave (circa Sept/70).
    I have fond memories of assisting Louis and Bill provide roast beef and the trimmings in the arena at the conclusion of the 1998 Wawa Ice fishing derby. 1,000 dinners were served to appreciative participants.
    Rest easy my friend
    Jim “the Greek” (my nom de plume)

  6. Our sincere condolences to the Portis Family
    Jack and Linda Cureatz

  7. As a teenager, I remember Louis at the Embassy – his warmth and hospitality was memorable. As a young family far from relatives, we went to the Embassy for dinner, but really it was to see Louis and family. He treated our kids like his own – asking Matthew what he was reading or what kind of dinosaur he was playing with. He also slipped them chocolate bars when we weren’t looking! Louis has been a big part of Wawa for so many. May our fond memories of him sustain us as we mourn his loss