ATHENS -- All ages and all generations today bid farewell "to the Greek and global, patriot and international Mikis Theodorakis," President of the Hellenic Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou said on Wednesday, during her eulogy at the farewell ceremony held at the Athens Cathedral for the beloved composer and politician.
Saying goodbye on behalf of all Greeks, she noted that Theodorakis "will always be here, a flower that has sprouted in our mature memory" and that his "cultural and social intervention changed Greece and each one of us in a way that was more indirect but far deeper than we can today understand."
Sakellaropoulou spoke of an exuberant, indomitable fighter who broke through the constraints of Greek defeatism and isolationism, joining the national with the universal to show a path toward forging the modern Greek identity.
"He gave us the priceless thread of his music to unravel and reach the clearing of democracy, turning his call into action and state, answering to our history," Sakellaropoulou added.
The president spoke of the way his music had brought together Greece's folk traditions, byzantine heritage, popular songs and modern innovations while noting that he had been a symbol of a responsible personal stance to the harsh demands of history, and a model of courage in expressing his beliefs, defying persecution, arrest, exile and disappointment.
"Mikis Theodorakis was present at every turn of our national adventure, always metabolising each historic moment through the traits of his special, strong personality, has left an indelible stamp on Greek life," she said.