John Anthony Aniston (born Giannis Anastasakis; July 24, 1933) is a Greek-American actor. He is best known for his role as Victor Kiriakis on the NBC daytime drama Days of Our Lives, which he originated in July 1985 and has played continually since then. Aniston is the father of actress Jennifer Aniston.
Aniston was born Giannis Anastasakis (Greek: Γιάννης Αναστασάκης) in Chania on the island of Crete, Greece, the son of Stella Joanne (October 1, 1899 — November 7, 1992) and Antonios Anastasakis (January 17, 1889 — May, 1965). His father anglicized his name when he immigrated to the United States when Aniston was two, and his parents opened a restaurant in Chester, Pennsylvania.
He graduated from Pennsylvania State University with a bachelor's degree in Theater Arts. While at Penn State, he became a member of Alpha Chi Rho fraternity. After college, he served in the United States Navy as an intelligence officer on active duty in Panama and later in the reserve, attaining the rank of Lieutenant Commander.
John has a daughter, actress Jennifer Aniston (born February 11, 1969), with his first wife, Nancy Dow, and also has a son, Alexander, with his second wife, Sherry Rooney Aniston (whom he had met while they worked on Love of Life, when she played a female attorney named Dory Patten who was in love with his character, Eddie Aleata). His daughter Jennifer's godfather was actor Telly Savalas, one of his best friends.
He has appeared in soap operas regularly since 1969, when he first joined Days of Our Lives as a character named Eric Richards, which he played until 1970. In 1975, he joined the cast of Love of Life as Eddie Aleata. In November 1978, he left Love and began playing Mary Stuart's new love interest, Martin Tourneur, on Search for Tomorrow in February 1979. He played that role until April 1984. He returned to the cast of Days of Our Lives a second time this time as Victor Kiriakis in July 1985 and continues to play the role.
He also played a small role on the television series Gilmore Girls. Aniston made guest appearances on Airwolf (Season 2), Combat, My Big Fat Greek Life, Star Trek: Voyager, Mission: Impossible, American Dreams (with Days co-star Frances Reid), Journeyman, and Mad Men.