This book traces my family’s history in the village of Sfikia in northern Greece, our migration to Australia in 1968 and my life in the Melbourne suburb of Broadmeadows until I commenced my legal career. The impetus for the book was the realisation that, unless I obtained an oral history of my family from my elderly parents, it would perish with them. As I listened to my parents reminisce, I realised that there was much about their story of which I was unaware and I gained a deeper understanding of the hardship that they had endured. I also reflected on my family’s early years in Australia when racist taunts caused me to be ashamed of my Greek heritage, to be embarrassed about my parents and even to adopt the Anglo-sounding name, John. Fortunately, once racism receded, I came to appreciate and respect my parents and my Greek background, and began asking people to call me Emilios.
This book is not just about my physical journey as a migrant; it is also about my emotional journey and about how I overcame racism and reclaimed my identity. With a foreword by The Honourable Marilyn Warren AC, Chief Justice of Victoria.
All copies are numbered and signed by Justice Kyrou.