Maria Elaine Harkis. December 30, 1965 – December 9, 2017.
Maria passed away peacefully in the presence of her sisters from complications due to a prolonged illness. Strong willed and independent, Maria was a fighter to the end. Every day another blessing to share with her son Dimitri. Although her life was cut short by a terrible illness she never complained and bore this burden with the same strength and determination that characterized her life.
She graduated from Skyline High school in Salt Lake City then went on to get a BA from the University of Utah. Maria’s free and adventuresome spirit then led her to New Jersey where she earned a Masters Degree in Architecture at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. She then went on to start her own business, Medusa, designing custom kitchens and bathrooms.
Maria was very proud of her Greek heritage and strong in her faith as a Greek Orthodox Christian. She was involved in cultural groups from her parents’ native island of Crete and participated in her church as a Sunday school teacher and member of Philoptochos.
Maria’s early life in Utah was a whirlwind of activity. Willful and passionate, she broke from the shadow of her sisters early on and forged her own unique existence. First as a gregarious waitress, then as creative designer with a flair for the avant garde.
Maria is preceeded in death by her parents, Spyro and Katherine Harkis. She is survived by her son Dimitri. Sisters: Angela (Dan) Kimball, Julie (Doug) Shewmaker, Georgette (Tykie) Skedros and former spouse Eric Porter who she has continued to be friends with in co-parenting Dimitri. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Funeral services will be held December 16th at 12:30pm. Saint George Greek Orthodox Church, 1033 West Park Avenue, Ocean Township, New Jersey 07712. Viewing will precede the funeral at the Fiore Funeral Home, 236 Monmouth Road, Ocean Township, New Jersey 07755 from 10:30am to 12:00.