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The story of Greek migrant Thomas Papadopoulos who is searching for his long-lost friend




A photo, a first name and some precious memories are Mr Thomas Papadopoulos’ only tools in his search for a long-lost friend, Nikos, who he travelled with on the ‘Patris’ during his voyage from Athens to Australia in 1962. They have lost contact for 59 years. 

“During the last lockdown in Melbourne, my wife and I were flicking through photo albums. In between old photos from Pella, my village in Greece, we found the only photo I have from my friend, Nikos,” Mr Papadopoulos, 85, tells The Greek Herald as he unfolds the story of the friendship.

“It was end of June 1962, when I left Piraeus with my wife Foula (Eumorfia) and my four-year-old son Lampis (Charalambos) for Australia onboard the “Patris”. 

“I met Nikos on the ship and we enjoyed each other’s company for the duration of the six-week journey. We used to dine together, joke and hang out,” Mr Papadopoulos says, adding “he had an optimistic view of life and was very honest and friendly”. 

Upon their arrival in Australia, Thomas Papadopolous and his family disembarked in Port Melbourne and Nikos continued his trip to Sydney. The men exchanged addresses and promised they would meet again. But life had other plans. 

Thomas Papadopoulos is searching for his long-lost friend, Nikos, who he travelled with on the ‘Patris’ in 1962

“At some point Nikos posted us this photo where he is pictured with his fiancée, Maria. We were so busy to find a house, a job and settle, in the new homeland, that we lost his contact details.

“I can’t remember his last name nor do I know where he lives,” says Mr Papadopoulos, hoping that someone will recognise his friend or any of the people on the photos of this article and will help locate his friend.

“I am so sorry we lost contact. I should have kept his details and should have searched for him sooner,” says Mr Papadopoulos, a well-known figure in Melbourne’s Greek community for his activity as a musician and entrepreneur. 

“I will be happy to reunite with Nikos and I would be very appreciative to anyone who can help,” he concludes.

*Should you recognise Nikos or any of the people on the photos, please contact ‘The Greek Herald’ on (02) 9566 0500 or email: greek@foreignlanguage.com.au

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