Born in Wellsville, NY on January 8, 1956 the son of John and Annette Gianas who predeceased him. He resided in Wellsville until he graduated high school in 1974 as valedictorian and Student Council president.
Peter attended medical school at John Hopkins University and later at George Washington University where he graduated in 1982. Dr. Gianas moved to Starke, Florida where he started his private practice and began work at Sands Hospital in 1983. He so loved the Starke community, he stayed and practiced medicine for the rest of his life there.
Dr. Gianas served as the Medical Director for Alachua County Fire Rescue, Bradford County EMS, Bradford County Fire Rescue, Clay County Fire Rescue, Union County EMS, Gilchrist County Fire Rescue, Starke Fire Rescue, Santa Fe Community College EMS Programs, Florida Gateway EMS Training Programs, AHEC Board of Directors, International Trauma Life Support Board of Directors, and as an Emergency Medicine Educator in many capacities.
Pete had a brilliant mind and a compassionate soul. He loved practicing medicine because he loved caring for people. He was a lifelong learner and a gifted teacher. Bradford County Emergency Medical Service was known and respected around the world for its cutting edge delivery of service to the community of Northern Florida.
Pete had a wonderful sense of humor and was a master story teller. He was a generous, loyal, loving man whose influence was felt on all who knew him. Dr. Pete will be truly missed.
Dr. Gianas is survived by sisters Sophia Gianas and Cynthia Schroeder. Two nieces, Christina Schroeder and Courtney (Brett) Stevens. Two nephews, Timothy (Alicia) Schroeder and Michael Gianas. Great nieces Makenzie Wheeler and Eryn Laskarzewski and a great nephew, Alex Laskarzewski. Aunt and Uncle John and Shirley Giopulos, their family and longtime friend, Lynn Fulmer.
A Memorial Service will be held at 12:00 noon, on August 6, 2021 at the Madison Street Baptist Church in Starke, Florida. The Family of Dr. Peter Gianas has requested in lieu of flowers donations be made to: The Friends of the David A. Howe Public Library, 155 North Main Street, Wellsville, New York 14895
“Dr. Pete” was a very important part of the Starke, Florida community and central Florida medical community. Local media outlet WCJB reported on his sudden passing:
The Bradford County Fire Rescue have posted this tribute in mourning and a colleague of Dr. Gianas posted a powerful tribute:
“To be sure, the past 2 years have brought with them a significant amount of loss. It seems that each week, there are new memories to unearth, revisit, and contemplate. There is a certain heaviness that accompanies each death. The only respite is the comfort that lingers in the wake of some of these memories. The circumstances of Dr. Pete’s death are complicated and private, but the light spread by his life transcends any geographic or political boundary.
I was a volunteer paramedic when I met Dr. Pete Gianas. I was struck by his accessibility and willingness to engage with any EMS provider who showed the slightest hint of clinical interest. Pete was a medical director, friend, emergency physician, and- quite literally- live in family member. It was not uncommon to find him hanging around the firehouse to provide “just in time” education or motivation. Pete was literally “everywhere” in north Florida EMS. Like his colleague Daniel Griffin who passed just months ago, Pete wanted all of his paramedics to meet with the greatest success possible, he’d “go to bat” for anyone encountering a problematic interaction at the hospital and welcome changes to protocol. He brought Gainesville Fire Rescue and Alachua County Fire Rescue together for joint educational sessions and helped me with medical school admissions process. It took me more than a few tries, but Pete turned the rejections into motivation because he’d be able to “keep me around.”
Pete’s commitment to EMS education extended outside of Alachua County. I had the privilege to work with him during “advanced airway courses” for his Bradford County Fire Rescue family. Pete managed to secure funding to fly Florida paramedics to the University of Maryland for an immersive, cadaver based airway experience. The course was well received by everyone in attendance. Predictably, Pete rarely took any credit for his participation. He preferred to use the opportunity to bring everyone back together, learn from other instructors, and simply celebrate good company. I can imagine the pervasive feelings of loss and grief experienced by his extended Florida family. I hope that the shared memories and mutual respect for Dr. Pete’s contributions to the field of prehospital medicine provide at least a small measure of comfort. Dr. Pete will be loved and missed. There is no question that his legacy is still very much alive through those of us who had the privilege to know him. Rest easy, friend.”
-Dr. Ben Lawner, DO, EMT-P
Medical Director Baltimore City Fire Department