The island of Astypalaia was the birthplace of many personalities during antiquity, among them, Phalaris, the tyrant of Agrigentum of Sicily, Onesicretus, the student of philosopher Diogenis, and Olympic medalist, Cleomedes, a boxer who was deprived of his victory in a boxing match due to his having killed his opponent. As soon as he returned to Astypalaia, in a fit of madness, he pulled down a supporting pillar, thus killing 60 students. Pursued by the residents of Astypalaia he closed himself in a trunk in the temple of Athena. When the inhabitants opened the trunk and did not find him in there, they appealed to the priestess of Delphi, who then advised them to honour him as an immortal.
Argiris Kambouris, born on 24 January 1962, is an ex basketball player and current trainer. He is an emblematic personality of Olympiakos of Piraeus, and the most significant moment of his career was the 1987 Eurobasket tournament, in the context of which he scored the two last free throws of the final against the Soviet Union, and gave the National Greek team the cup. Over the last years he has worked for the Olympiakos club as a technical consultant.
Anthimos Kapsis (3/09/1950- ) is an ex international footballer who used to play in the position of centre-back (sweeper). He is the father of Mihalis Kapsis, who is also an ex international footballer.
Giannis Adartis was born in Astypalaia on 25 December 1944, but from being a small child he has lived in Leros. He studied as a civil engineer in Italy, in the University of Napoli, and later on returned to Leros, where he was self-employed. From a young age he delved into Leros’ community issues and he has taken on the role of president in cultural, social and athletic unions of the island. He was also president of the Leros State Rehabilitative Sanatorium at some point, and he also served as mayor of Leros for three four-year terms. His social work was honoured with the Golden Cross of the Dodecanesian Church of the Ecumenical Throne by Patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew, as well as by UNICEF, and by the ex president of the U.S.A. George Bush, who gave him the title of ‘honorary citizen of the state of Texas’. He also wrote the book ‘Links of Life‘.
Traditional musician Nikitas Kastrinos was born on the island of Astypalaia to a poor family. Raised in a family with musical knowledge, as his grand-father played the lyra and his father had knowledge of the lute, they often all went to Hydra together and, with their music, accompanied the mechanics on their embarkation. But Nikitas wanted to learn the violin and he went to Rhodes to take lessons. Being the heart and soul of the local fairs, to honour him, the Municipal Conservatory of Astypalaia was named after him.
Self-taught lute player Iordanis was born and raised in Symi, but settled in Astypalaia. His regular job was that of sponge-merchant, but his heart’s desire was music. With his lute, he accompanied Nikitas Kastrinos at local fairs and festivities.
Edited by: Yallou