Joy Pappas Pulakos, of Pulakos 926 Chocolates, died Sunday, leaving behind a legacy of fine chocolate-making and innovation in the industry.

Pulakos, 84, was the wife of the late Achilles “Herk” Pulakos, a former owner and grandson of founder George P. Pulakos. George P. Pulakos opened Pulakos 926 Chocolates in Erie, Pennsylvania, in 1903 after about a decade of selling his handmade candies from his home and on the streets of Philadelphia.

Joy Pappas Pulakos
Joy Pappas Pulakos

Joy Pulakos also joined the business, working with merchandising and gifts.

Al Heilman, of Heilman’s Nuts and Confections, remembers her from the Retail Confectioners International/Gus Pulakos Candy School, a short course for candy makers held at the store. “She was most gracious to all of us as we attended confectionery school at your candy company. Many good memories!” he writes in a guestbook for her on

Joy Pulakos is survived by her two daughters Elaine D. Pulakos and Diane E. Pulakos and son George A. Pulakos, who is also a former owner and still involved with the business.

Pulakos 926 Chocolates stayed in the family for four generations until it was sold in 2009.