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Nickolaos "Steve" Stavrou

Nickolaos "Steve" Stavrou

May 1, 1962 - Apr 2, 2024

Nickolaos "Steve" Stavrou - Obituary

With the saddest of hearts, we announce the passing of our beloved N. Stephen Stavrou, affectionately known as Steve, who departed this world much too young and unexpectedly at his home on April 2, 2024, at the age of 61. Steve brought so much laughter, joy, and love to all of the lives he touched. We know he will continue to do so in the years to come. As Henry Scott Holland said: “Death is nothing at all, I have only slipped away to the next room. Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same as it ever was. There is absolute unbroken continuity. Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am but waiting for you. For an interval. Somewhere. Very near. Just around the corner. All is well.” Steve had the biggest, warmest heart and boundless love and generosity. He lived life to its fullest and in his one lifetime, which was far too short, we think he lived about four of them. He had an incredibly unique sense of humor, and no matter the situation he would find the light and laughter in it. His infectious laughter could light up the darkest of days and always reminded us to embrace joy in every moment. Steve was incredibly kind and sensitive, and every time he teared up when anyone else was around, he used the excuse “I’m not crying, my eyes always water at this time of the day!” The absolute most important parts of Steve’s life were his two daughters, Rose (age 25) and Christina (age 23), and his 4-year-old grandson, Nicholas. He spent every second he could either spending time with his daughters and grandson or taking his boat out on the Chesapeake. He loved adventure and the ocean. He loved music more than most and spent too much time making completely random playlists called “Dad’s Songs” and “Dad’s New Stuff,” playing them on full blast out of his iPhone speaker before bed every night. He made sure to pass that on to his daughters. Walking throughout his home it is like a shrine to his family, and he made sure there were pictures and memorabilia in every direction. Smiling, happy, fun, adventurous pictures of boating, fishing, beaching, Disney, Florida, the Bahamas, NYC, Broadway, Jimmy Buffett concerts, and Beaver Creek skiing. Steve lived such a full life and made sure his family lived the same way. He was the most incredible father that any two kids could ask for and was so proud to be a dad and a grandfather. One of his only wishes was to give his children a wonderful and happy childhood and adulthood and pass on all of the good parts of his being, and he did that and more. For his daughters, Steve truly was and still is their role model, their shoulder to cry on, their protector, their biggest cheerleader, their goofy dad, and their best friend. He shines through his daughters and lives on through them. Steve was a beacon of strength, their comfort and the most loving and fun dad there ever could be. He raised his daughters with boundless love, and he gifted them with his sense of humor, his strength, his drive, and his passion for adventure. He never missed a school event or daddy-daughter dance. He provided and encouraged any and every opportunity to learn and grow. He taught them always to believe in themselves and to use their talents for good. Steve gave them the most magical childhoods filled with seashells, beaches, plane rides, music, museums, flying lessons, boat-driving lessons, concerts, weekends on the boat, skiing, and hiking, and made sure they grew up with his love for the water. Steve always had the most beautiful decorations for his girls for every holiday, but especially Christmas, with palm trees for their Christmas tree, ceiling-high stuffed animals, and lights covering every inch of their home. He loved taking them to New York City during Christmastime and seeing the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular at Radio City Music Hall, helping them find their favorite American Girl Dolls at the American Girl Doll store, taking them to the Rockefeller Christmas Tree, and staying at the “Princess Palace,” as Steve would call the New York Palace, ordering one too many room-service cookie towers. To little Nicholas, Steve was his beloved PeaPaw, the most awesome, super silly playmate. We remember Steve’s smile and twinkling eyes as Nicholas adored him, pulling on his tie at Christina and Jackson’s engagement party. This was the first time he had seen PeaPaw wearing a tie. The lasting memories of Nicholas and Steve are full of belly laughing, playing endlessly as different superhero characters, spraying each other with water guns inside of the house, and riding on the ATV in the backyard. Steve was a real practical joker with his family and friends. One time, he decided to secretly blast the car heater on his brother-in-law, who got hotter and hotter to the point of extreme discomfort and had no idea why. At family events, Steve stealthily hid cars to convince people that their cars were stolen. Another time, he wanted his entire home completely lit up for Christmas, in typical Steve fashion. He convinced his friend Chris to call in sick to work to put up the lights by saying he would pay him five times his daily earnings. While Chris toiled away, Steve opened a window to spook Chris who broke the gutter and fell to the ground. Steve burst out laughing and his infectious laughter made it so Chris couldn’t help but laugh. Steve always knew how to turn a difficult situation into one filled with laughter. Steve gave his nephew, Andrew Moore, the nickname “Fidge.” Though Steve chose to keep his business side serious, he did name one of his companies “F.W. Construction,” which stood for “Fidgety-What Construction.” And not to forget, Steve also served his brother-in-law Efrain with fake court papers from Efrain and Dorian’s housekeeper alleging paternity. Even more than his humor, Steve was incredibly sentimental, writing eloquent messages to his daughters professing his love and pride every chance he could. He kept treasured memorabilia of the many homemade gifts and writings from Rose and Christina and other loved ones. You could not separate him from the family hand-stitched cross over his bed that he inherited from his parents or from the flag he cherished from his father’s burial. Steve was very generous with everyone in all facets of life, and he put his heart and soul into helping others fulfill their dreams. From teaching his nephew the family business to making adventure vacations and Disney dreams come true for so many friends and family, he did his best to teach everyone how to have fun, to live to the fullest and love their lives. After five girls and five more years … Steve was the long-awaited, much-heralded first-born son in a big Greek-Italian family. He was a kind, sweet, easy-going child, although he enjoyed tormenting his younger brother. Steve loved airplanes and matchbox cars, Batman and Robin and little Max the dog from Get Smart. In his childhood, Steve enjoyed boating, spending time at the beach and piloting small aircraft with his father. At the age of 11, Steve got his first taste of the real estate world, was tasked with picking up trash at his father’s construction worksites and progressed to other manual labor. He soon decided he was going to be a real estate developer and that is just what he did. He graduated from Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda, Maryland where he played soccer and was in a local band that played at many parties and later wound up on national TV, which he told his daughters at least once a month. Fittingly, the name of that band was the “Ramblin’ Beach Guys”. Steve went on to graduate with a BS in Business, focusing on Urban and Regional Planning, from East Carolina University and an MBA in Finance from the University of Maryland. In his younger years, Steve grew closer with his lifelong best friends, Tom and Bruce. Of the very few select photos he has on his bedside table, Steve made sure to always keep his favorite picture of the three of them front and center. His creativity, imagination, drive, and intellect served him well as he became a successful self-made real estate developer at a young age. In his twenties, he and Jim Humphrey established Humphrey-Stavrou Associates Inc., and in his thirties launched his own company, Stavrou Associates Inc., and multiple related entities. The Stavrou Companies have developed, constructed, and still own more than 4,100 units in 30-plus projects throughout the Atlantic region. Steve and his amazing team members have provided homes for thousands of low-income families and seniors. Steve always took the girls to his ongoing projects, so much so that the smell of fresh paint and wood reminded them of him. Rose and Christina are so proud of their father for his countless industry awards and his well-known reputation as being a “real estate developer with a conscience” and an “honest builder.” They are honored to facilitate the continuance of his legacy. When Steve had his two daughters, he took them on all of his adventures, and he lived and breathed to make them smile. He made sure they both touched the ocean within the first six months of their lives and that they never went too long without it. Steve and the girls spent most of their time on their boat and living life to the fullest together. As the years unfolded, he continued his adventures with his daughters, relaxing on the boat, drinking Landsharks on the beach in Florida, riding his motorcycle, and taking long walks in Quiet Waters Park. Steve was eager to retire and had started some of his “retirement” activities already. He had a blast seeing Jimmy Buffett on his last tour with Christina, boating with his daughters and grandson including teaching Nicholas how to fish off the boat, hanging out with friends including his good friend Cassandra Kaptanic, and grilling with his family in the backyard. Just a few days before Steve passed, he had Rose and her boyfriend, Christina, his future son-in-law Jackson, and Nicholas come over for a family dinner, grilling steaks and laughing until their bellies hurt. We feel lucky that he was able to meet his first grandchild, Nicholas, and his first son-in-law, Jackson Smith. Steve (“Dad”, “Pee-Paw”) is survived by his two daughters, Rose (“Rosie”) and Christina (“Teenie”) Stavrou and his grandson, Nicholas (“Yay”). Steve is also survived by his sisters, Nikki Swain, Linda Jamison, Dorian Fernendez and Aletha Woodruff and his brother, Mark Stavrou. We feel comforted to know that he is now reunited with his parents, Rose and Nick Stavrou, sister, Angie Moore and nephew, Chris Clark. Steve, we still see you lounging at the marina or grilling in the backyard in your Buffett t-shirt and khaki shorts “uniform,” while sipping Landshark beer and listening to your favorite Jimmy Buffett music. Steve had the fullest life any person could ever have, and we know he is at peace, resting, reuniting with the loved ones gone before him, and hanging out with Jimmy Buffett. In his passing, Steve has returned home, leaving behind a legacy of love, laughter, and cherished memories that will endure for generations to come. Rose and Christina loved when Steve would tell them, “know I am always there with you in heart and in spirit,” and he takes every chance he can to let them know that he is still with them. Friends and family are invited to celebrate Steve's life on Thursday, April 11 from 5 to 8 pm at the Kalas Funeral Home & Crematory, 2973 Solomons Island Road, Edgewater, MD 21037. In typical Steve fashion, we will be playing Jimmy Buffett. In honor of Steve, some of us will be dressing in Jimmy Buffett style, and we welcome everyone to join us. A funeral service will be held on Friday, April 12, 2024, at 10:30 am at St. John Neumann Catholic Church, 620 N. Bestgate Rd., Annapolis, MD 21401. Interment is private. Memorial donations may be made in Steve's memory to Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Attn: Membership Department, 6 Herndon Avenue, Annapolis, MD 21403. Please take a moment to leave a condolence for the family using the Memories tab on this page.