New Jersey Luncheon in Honor of the Nazarian Clan


By Hagop Vartivarian


PATERSON, N.J. – A hokejash (luncheon) was given in memory of Armenian philanthropist Nazar Nazarian’s parents and relatives on April 30 in Krichian’s Middle Eastern Grill and Bistro. Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), Ambassador Zohrab Mnatsakanyan, representative of the Republic of Armenia to the United Nations, Armenian notables from the greater New York area, and Armenian Democratic Liberal Party (ADLP) leaders were present.

As this is the year of the centennial of the Genocide, Nazarian wanted to organized this event in memory of his parents, Levon Efendi and Satenig Nazarian, survivors of the Armenian Genocide, as well as of his siblings Garbis (born on April 24, 1915 and who died last month), Noubar, and Marie Markarian.

In heartfelt words, Nazarian began the luncheon by describing the odyssey of his parents. Deported from Aintab, they settled in the Havran area of Syria, moved to Aleppo, and then to Beirut. He powerfully described their unwavering patriotism, their loyalty to Holy Echmiadzin and their humanitarian feelings.

Barsamian conducted the hokejash prayer service, and stressed the strong national spirit of the entire Nazarian clan. Amb. Mnatsakanyan in turn praised the philanthropic work of the family throughout the diaspora as well as in Armenia.

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Dr. Raffy Hovanessian, a friend of the Nazarian family, served as toastmaster. First, though, he spoke in detail about the recent commemorative events in New York. He praised the man responsible for the Times Square event, Hirant Gulian; local ADLP chapter chairman Norair Meguerditchian, who organized the April 24 day march to the Turkish embassy; ADLP member Vartan Abdo, responsible for the Armenian Radio Hour of New Jersey; and the Tekeyan Cultural Associations’ Meher Megerdchian Theatrical Group which successfully presented Berj Zeytuntsian’s “All Rise, Court Is in Session,” based on the trial of Soghomon Tehlirian and Operation Nemesis.

Zaven Khanjian, executive director of the Armenian Evangelical Association, philanthropist Sarkis Bedevian, Khoren Bandazian, who was chairman of the East Coast Armenian Genocide Centennial Commemoration Central Committee, and several others then spoke.


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