(This is husband of Martha Ann West.)
George "Pete" Vletas
George "Pete" Vletas, 78, life-long resident of Abilene, died Friday, September 18, 2009 at his home. Funeral services will be at 2:00 pm on Tuesday, September 22, 2009 at the Church of the Heavenly Rest, Episcopal. The Rev. Mary Glover, The Rev. Bill Wright and The Rev. Roz Thomas will officiate. Burial will follow in the Cedar Hill Cemetery. The family will receive friends on Monday from 5:00 to 7:00 pm at The Hamil Family Funeral Home, 6449 Buffalo Gap Road.
November 11, 1930, Pete was born in Abilene, Texas to George Dimitris Vletas and Irene (Thomas) Vletas. He graduated early from Abilene High School in December of 1947. From 1948 to 1951 he attended the University of Texas. He then attended The University of Houston. He lettered in Tennis both at the University of Texas and Hardin Simmons. In August of 1951, Pete joined the United States Navy. He served during the Korean Conflict before being honorably discharged on August 30, 1959.
Pete returned to Hardin-Simmons and graduated with a degree in Geology and Math. He was a Geophysicist and Geologist by education, and after college graduation he was employed by Pan American Oil Company and briefly by National Geophysical in Wyoming.
He managed Mack Eplen Restaurants in Abilene for eight years, and later worked at West Texas Coffee and Equipment, before going into the business for himself. Pete is best known for continuing the Vletas candy making tradition founded in 1912 by his parents, George and Irene Vletas. He owned Vletas Enterprises, which evolved into Candies by Vletas, located at 1201 North 1st Street in Abilene.
October 1, 1966, he married Martha Ann West in Abilene, Texas. Martha taught school at St. Johns School and began working with Pete in the 90's at Candies by Vletas. They both retired from Candies by Vletas in 2001.
Pete was a member and past president of the Cactus Lions Club and a member of the Texas Restaurant Association. He was also a member of the Church of the Heavenly Rest, Episcopal. Pete was a kind and generous person who did many good deeds for others that were never known.
Preceding him in death were his parents, one daughter, Kelly Vletas and two brothers, James and John Vletas.
Pete is survived by his wife, Martha Vletas, of Abilene; three daughters, Nicole Vletas Standly, of Houston, Debra Mashburn, of Ft. Worth, and Donna Peters, of Manassas, Virginia; one sister, Helen Andrews, of Abilene; six grandchildren, C.A. Standly, of Austin, Suzanne Standly, of Houston, Kimberly Bennett, of Flower Mound, Cody Mashburn, of Frisco, Shannon Peters Hansen a, of Colorado Springs, Colorado and Cameron Peters, of Manassas, Virginia. Pete is also survived by five great-grandchildren, Caleb Mashburn, Jaden and Julia Bennett, Olivia and Ben Mashburn; as well as a cousin, Dr. Mary Booth Steward, of Abilene and many beloved nieces and nephews.
Memorials may be made in Pete's honor to the Church of the Heavenly Rest, Episcopal, 602 Meander, Abilene, Texas 79602; Young Life of Abilene, 1917 South 6th Street, Abilene, Texas 79604; or to the charity of your choice.The obituary and guestbook may be viewed and signed online at:www.HamilFamilyFuneralHome.com
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