Aram Hagop Kalikian

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FREDERICK, Md. — Aram Hagop Kalikian, 88, formerly of Cranston RI, died on July 1. Born on October 20, 1924, to Hagop (born in Agn, Turkey) and Haigouhi Artinian-Kalikian (born in Bucharest, Romania) he grew up in Bucharest, with his sister, Louisa (1921) and brother Garabed (1923).

Due to the early and prolonged illness of his father, Aram became an apprentice to a master jeweler in order to help his family. Hardship followed him, as he lost his parents and brother in the early 1940s. However, by hard labor and honest application of his trade, he was able to survive the tough years during World War II in Romania and immigrated to Armenia in 1948 with his sister Louisa.

Unbeknownst to him, the same ship which transported him to Armenia was also carrying his future bride, Vassilica Effeian.

In Armenia he quickly earned a reputation as a trusted and well respected master jeweler, and trained many young apprentices along with a few of his fellow recent emigrants from the diaspora. He was instrumental in establishing the first fine jewelry manufacturing factory in the then-Soviet Republic of Armenia. The facility went on to become one of the major fine jewelry production facilities in the former USSR.

He was also a fine model maker, and many of his jewelry creations earned top prizes and awards.

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Aram and Vassilica Effeian met each other in Yerevan, and after a brief courtship were married on April 25, 1954. They moved to New York City in August 1973 with their two sons, Hagop and Varoujan. Soon after his arrival, Aram Kalikian opened a small jewelry business on 47th Street, in Manhattan’s jewelry district. Here again, he soon became recognized as an honest and hardworking master jeweler. In 2007, the couple moved to Cranston, RI. They were in the process of moving into Frederick when Aram succumbed to illness and passed away at Frederick Memorial Hospital.

He is survived by Vassilica, his wife of 59 years; their two sons, Hagop and Varoujan, and their spouses, Armine and Aida; four grandchildren, Arpi, Aram, Arman and Narek; his sister Louisa of Salem, Mass, and two nieces, Haigouhi and Araxi, and their spouses, Onig and Richard, and their children Ara, Manoug, Hasmig, Anahid, and Karine.

Despite having limited education, he loved to read and was able learn on his own to read, write and speak three other languages, in addition to his native Romanian. He succeeded in learning how to read and write Armenian, Russian, and finally at the age of 50, he made a special effort to learn English.

The funeral service was held on Saturday, July 6 at St. Mary Armenian Apostolic Church, followed by burial at Mount Olivet Cemetery, 515 South Market Street, Frederick, MD.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made in his memory to St. Mary Armenian Apostolic Church, 4125 Fessenden St. NW, Washington, DC 20016.

 

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