George Antonios Antonas, the retired chair of the Patapsco Senior High School physical education department, who was an award-winning soccer coach, died of multiple organ failure Dec. 27 at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. The Rosedale resident was 88.
His daughter, Karen T. Malonoukos of Bel Air, said her father had suffered severe smoke inhalation when his home caught fire Dec. 7.
Born in Melona, Rhodes, Greece, and raised in Highlandtown, he was the son of Harriet Karagiannias and Antonios Antonas. He came with his family to the U.S. when he was 5 years old and was a 1948 graduate of Patterson Park High School, where he played football. He served in the U.S. Army in Germany.
As a young man he assisted his father at restaurants he owned — New SkyView and the Towne Pride, both in East Baltimore. He also worked briefly for Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone.
“After cleaning too many potatoes and working for the telephone company, he decided to go to college,” said his daughter.
He earned a degree at what is now McDaniel College, where he was a football linebacker. He studied biology and physical education and later received a master’s degree, also at McDaniel.
He joined the faculty at Sparrows Point Senior High School and moved to Patapsco Senior High School, where he became chair of the physical education department. He also taught biology, summer school and driver's education. He retired in 1992.
Mr. Antonas also coached basketball, football and soccer. His teams won numerous Maryland state championships in the 1970s and 1980s. A 1980 Sun article detailed his wins, “Patapsco is soccer king again.”
“My father had a wonderful personality and was always telling a joke,” said his daughter. “He had a great disposition and was kind, generous and selfless.”
He enjoyed traveling in his van to Florida for family vacations. He also assisted his brother, Nick Antonas, at his restaurant, the Eastern House in Highlandtown. He also had a wide circle of friends and ate at a different restaurant with them six days a week.
In addition to his daughter and brother, survivors include two other daughters, Toni M. Antonas of Pompano Beach, Fla. and Leah G. Antonas of Baltimore; and four grandchildren. His wife of 51 years, Frances Minadakis, a homemaker who was also an Eastern House host, died in 2007.
Services were held Dec. 31 at St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church.