George Elliott Atanasoff, O.D., age 76, passed away December 25, 2021, at Heritage Crossing in Fairlawn after a battle with Alzheimer's Disease.
George was born in Newark, Ohio on February 20, 1945, the son of George and Olga (Vaiea) Atanasoff. George's father, a Sergeant in the U.S. Army, was killed in action in the Battle of the Bulge on December 21, 1944. On February 8, 1947, his mother married Joseph Perch, and the family lived in Akron, where George grew up.
George was a 1963 graduate of Garfield High School. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from The Ohio State University in 1967. After graduation, he served as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Army, stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
George began his career as a teacher, first in the Athens, Ohio, public schools, then in the Akron Public Schools as a high school science teacher, later as an outdoor education teacher. While still teaching, he earned his Master's in Psychology in May 1979 from the University of Akron. He then worked as a school psychologist. When he was in his early forties, he was accepted into the College of Optometry at The Ohio State University, where he received a Doctor of Optometry (O.D.) degree in 1991. George opened Eye and Vision Center in Bath, Ohio following graduation, later purchasing a second practice in Strongsville, Ohio. George was in the practice of Optometry until his retirement in July 2018.
George was married June 24, 2000, to Linda (Thompson) Atanasoff. She preceded him in death on January 25, 2007.
He is survived by one sister, Vicki Gilbert, of New Albany, Ohio; one brother, Jim (Connie) Perch, of Jefferson City, Missouri; brother-in-law Dr. Thomas Gilbert, Blacklick, Ohio; sister-in-law, Mary (George) Wasilko, Brunswick, Ohio; brother-in-law Mike (Susann) Thompson, Santa Fe, New Mexico; nieces Jamie Gilbert (Cory Powell), Pataskala, Ohio; Colleen (John) Peluso, Valparaiso, Indiana; Katie (Kevin) Spear, Jefferson City, Missouri; grandnieces, grandnephews, and numerous cousins; and a special friend and caregiver, Linda Hull, of Akron. He was preceded in death by his wife, parents, and nephew, Zachary Gilbert.
George was intelligent, well educated, and dedicated to his patients' welfare during his career as an optometrist. He was a devoted son, taking care of his mother for years. He loved reading, movies, the outdoors, and was a lifelong Cleveland Indians fan. He was a member of St. Thomas Eastern Orthodox Church, where he spent many years volunteering in the parish hall kitchen at fish fries and catering events.
The family wishes to express their appreciation to Linda Hull and the staffs of Senior Helpers, Heritage Crossing, Assurance Health, and Southern Care Hospice for their dedication to George and the care they provided him.
Visitation will take place Monday, January 3rd from 10:00 - 11:00 am at St. Thomas Eastern Orthodox Church, 555 S. Cleveland-Massillon Road; Fairlawn, Ohio. Funeral Service will begin immediately following the Visitation. Interment will take place at Strongsville Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Thomas Eastern Orthodox Church or the Alzheimer's Association.
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