Chris Pangikas

Age 71, of Wilkins Twp., passed away peacefully in his home on Friday, January 5, 2018. Born in New York, NY on April 12, 1946, he was the only son of Nicholas and Catherine Pangikas and, inspired by the musical talents of his father, fostered a life-long love of music that defined every aspect of his life. He was a USAF veteran and proud member of the USAF Band.

Chris went on to become a gifted computer programmer and worked for Harris Electronics, PCS, and AMX until he retired in 2012. He was a loving spouse to his wife, Patricia (Sietam), and caring father to his four girls, Cathy (Steve) Masters, Athena (Michael) Pangikas-Miller, Damaris (Joe) Krist, and Mary (Levi) Goehring. He was a doting grandfather to eight grandchildren, Niko, Eli, and Owen Masters; Ares, Persephone, and Ajax Pangikas-Miller; Brando and Cambria Krist; and a grandson on the way, Russell Goehring.

He also leaves behind many beloved friends and a community of musicians and artists that knew and respected his generosity, humor, and talent for the 40 plus years he resided in the city. He was an accomplished piano player and composer and was responsible for many notable Pittsburgh staples like the Roth Carpet jingle and the musical direction for the 1990 remake of Night of the Living Dead, which was recorded in his in-home studio. He was the founder of the Breeze band, establishing a decade-long jazz series at Penn Center featuring Pittsburgh’s best players, and a weekly performer at the Omni Hotel. Additionally, he performed, recorded, and produced a Christmas album, It’s That Time of Year, with his dear friend, vocalist, Michele Bensen.

Though he has a left a vast hole in the wake of his passing, his memory and music live on through his body of work and his family and friends who carry on his light and vision. He was an innovator, creator, and lover of life whose indomitable spirit never faltered. He lived for his music; he lived for his family and those he loved. We are thankful to have known him and received his insight, grace, and unwavering love. We will love him “until dolphins fly and parrots live at sea.” Always.

In lieu of flowers, his family requests donations to the McGowan Institute, whose cutting-edge research afforded him five extra years of life and memories, by visiting the Philanthropy page at directed to the McGowan Institute in memory of Chris Pangikas.

Friends will be received at the William F. Gross Funeral Home, 11735 Frankstown Road Pittsburgh, PA 15235 where a service will be held Saturday at 10 a.m. Visitation Friday from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m.