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Grigorios Kominos - a respected Kytherian Australian

Updated: May 27

Grigorios Kominos was born on 4 November 1896 in Katsoulianika and was baptised on 14 November 1896 in the Agios Dimitrios church in the same town. He was the youngest of the six children of Spiridonas Kominos and Grigoritsa Moti. He completed his schooling in Potamos from 1910-1912, where he studied a variety of subjects including Greek, mathematics, religion, history, geography, natural history, calligraphy, iconography, French, and physics. He received marks ranging from nearly good to average.


In April 1913, Grigorios arrived in Sydney onboard the Roon and was now known as Gregory Comino. He worked as a waiter in Murwillumbah in 1916 and as an oysterman at 17 Woodlark Street in Lismore in 1920. On 10 June 1920, he applied for Australian naturalisation in Lismore, but the forms became invalid and he had to reapply in October 1921 while living in Wynyard Street, Tumut.

Signature of Gregory Comino NAA: A1, 1920/10421 © Commonwealth of Australia (National Archives of Australia) 2023

In December 1926, Gregory's partnership with Harry Vages in Forbes was dissolved and he took over the business on his own. In 1927, he owned the White Roses Café in Parkes, and in February of that year, he married Lucy Spellson of Condobolin in the Church of England in Parkes. They honeymooned in Woy Woy after "motoring" to the city.


In April 1928, Gregory lived in Jerilderie and was wanted for having missing numberplates on his blue, touring, overland car. In 1930, he lived in Clarinda Street, Parkes and was a refreshment room proprietor. In August 1932, he was granted a Sunday trading license in Dubbo, where he lived in 1933 and owned a café. In January 1934, he donated a silver cup for competition at the new Macquarie Rifle Club in Dubbo.


In 1934, Gregory lived in Gaskill Street, Cudal and was a refreshment room proprietor, and in 1935 he lived at 130 Percy Street, Wellington. In 1937, he lived in Caragabal and was a shop proprietor. In 1939, his wife Lucy died in Tumut.


Gregory never forgot Kythera and donated money from Australia to Kytherian projects such sending £0-10 in 1937 for the construction of the port in Agia Pelagia.


In December 1943, furniture and effects belonging to Gregory and W. J. Campbell were to be sold as he was leaving Cootamundra. The goods were described as modern and in new condition. In 1946, Gregory lived on Second Street, Quandialla and worked as a shop assistant.


In May 1951, Gregory was a café proprietor in Dandaloo Street, Narromine. Later that month, while driving at 45 mph on the Mitchell Highway near the Dubbo airport, he was "dazzled by the lights of a car" and lost sight as he approached a slow-moving car, causing him to swerve and overturn his utility truck. In October 1951, while driving uphill at River Lett Hill, his offside rear wheel hit a greasy patch and he swerved in front of an oncoming car, causing a collision. The other car was then hit from behind.


On 23 March 1952, Gregory and his sons had sold the Garden Café and were leaving Narromine, so the residents of the town gave them a send-off. Staff presented Gregory with gifts including a cigarette case and friends presented him with a "wallet of notes". His partners in his new, unknown company were Harry Georgeson of Dubbo and Al Stathis of Wellington, who presented him with a suitcase.


In 1954, Gregory left Narromine and lived at 6 Glendon Street, Kingaroy with a son, who worked as a shop assistant while Gregory was a shop proprietor. On 18 October 1956, Gregory died in Camperdown or Newtown, and on 19 October 1956, he was buried in the Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park in Sydney in plot FM 14 position 1305, which is an unmarked grave.

Unmarked grave of Gregory Comino in Sydney


National Archives of Australia

Trove - National Library of Australia

Church of Latter Day Saints - familysearch

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