Billy A. Fokakis
Billy Arthur Fokakis, age 61, passed away on Monday, January 22, 2018, after a brief fight with cancer. Billy was a resident of Petal, Mississippi and ran the family-owned restaurant, Coney Island Cafe, from 1985 to the present. In his final days he was surrounded by his most loyal customers, friends, and family.
While Billy was most well-known as the owner of the Coney Island Cafe, it was more than just a business for him. If you watched him closely, you would see him feeding a hungry customer who couldnít afford a meal or sneaking kids a popsicle just to make them smile. He was loved by all who knew him, be it because of his big smile, the amazing food he would make, or how he genuinely cared for and checked in on those in need. He was a son, a brother, and uncle, a coach, a friend, and most importantly an amazing father. He was extremely loving and proud of his two children and taught them understanding, empathy, kindness, and how to help someone without expecting anything in return. A man like Billy Fokakis doesnít come around often. When you meet someone like that, their presence lingers forever.
Billy Fokakis lived his life to the fullest and filled it with the things he loved. When he wasnít at work, you could probably find him fishing on his boat out in the Gulf of Mexico. He loved fishing for redfish and speckled trout, but took just as much joy in taking others fishing. He loved drinking a Root Beer from a glass bottle and eating a Baby Ruth candy bar after a long day of fishing, because thatís what his father did when he was a boy. He loved going to New Orleans Saints games and was well known in Section 130. He loved eating the best food; and once I saw him take down a 2-and-a-half-pound stuffed lobster called the "Lobster Kadobster." He loved telling jokes to his friends at the cafe and they usually started with "did you hear the one about..." He loved playing blackjack and won more often than he lost. He loved the Lord and prayed fervently. Most importantly, he loved his family.
Billy is preceded in death by his parents, Arthur Fokakis Jr. of Patmos, Greece and Victoria Mitchell Fokakis of Houston, Texas. He is survived by his two children, BJ Fokakis and Kayla Fokakis, both of Petal, MS., two step-daughters, Tonya Spiers and Shanna Newell and their children; a brother, Arthur Fokakis III (Judy Fokakis) of Whitehouse, TX, and sisters Cynthia Fokakis of Petal, MS and Christy McArthur (Walt McArthur) of Hattiesburg, MS.; nieces Michelle Armand (Lucas Armand) and Stacy Bryant; nephews Greg Bryant, Michael Fokakis, Tyler Royals, and Alex Royals; one great-niece and two great-nephews.
The funeral service will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 27, 2018 at Westminster Presbyterian Church of Hattiesburg with a brief visitation beginning before the service at 9:00 a.m. Father Tommy Conway of Saint Fabian Catholic Church will be officiating. Visitation will be held on Friday, January 26, 2018, at Hulett-Winstead Funeral Home located in downtown Hattiesburg beginning at 5:00 and lasting until 8:00 p.m. Burial will immediately follow the funeral service with Billy Fokakis being laid to rest at Highland Cemetery.