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11/26/2019

By Asbed David Medzorian

A who’s who of dignitaries, friends, family members, and colleagues gathered on November 17th to wish Nakhgin Sbarabed Jack Medzorian a happy ninety-third birthday and to thank him for his service to Armenians and to Armenia which he and his wife Eva have visited nearly one hundred times since 1972.

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Jack Medzorian Honored For a Lifetime of Service to Armenians

By Asbed David Medzorian

A who’s who of dignitaries, friends, family members, and colleagues gathered on November 17th to wish Nakhgin Sbarabed Jack Medzorian a happy ninety-third birthday and to thank him for his service to Armenians and to Armenia which he and his wife Eva have visited nearly one hundred times since 1972.

The gala, which was held in Keljik Hall at the Saint James Armenian Church Cultural Center in Watertown and was hosted by the Knights of Vartan Ararat Talij No. 1 and The Daughters of Vartan Arpie Otyag No. 9.

Medzorian twice served as Commander of Ararat Tahlij during the 1990’s. Ararat Tahlij Sbarabed Argishti Chaparian and Arpie Otyag Dirouhie Dr. Knarik Arkun welcomed the guests and then introduced as Master of Ceremonies, family friend and Asbed Paul Boghosian. Prayers were offered by Archpriest and Nakhgin Sbarabed Antranig Baljian and Reverend Father Arakel Aljalian.

The celebration began with a video highlighting the many humanitarian projects in Armenia that Jack Medzorian has been involved with, including the delivery of educational supplies and medical equipment to remote areas of the country. The video also included good wishes to Jack by the former principal of what is now the Knights of Vartan School No. 106 in Yerevan.  Dr. Gagik Dallakyan of the Artsvaberd Hospital in Armenia’s Tavush Region thanked Jack for the portable ultrasound machines that were delivered to the medical facility. Other messages of gratitude came from Ashot Yeghiazaryan and Rouzanne Sakanyan of The Fuller Center for Housing. The high praise for Jack Medzorian was also echoed by the Knights and Daughters of Vartan. Liaison Gohar Palyan described how Medzorian and his wife would visit the remote border villages of Armenia, meeting with locals and making friends despite the dangers involved with traveling to those areas. Knights of Vartan Grand Commander Steven Adams, in his recorded remarks, commended Jack Medzorian for all the help he has given to Armenia, noting that his contributions are usually made quietly and without fanfare. Adams said that Medzorian embodies what it means to be a Knight of Vartan. The Governor of Tavush Region in Armenia echoed those sentiments in a written letter to Jack Medzorian. Hayk  Chobanyan wrote, “The energy you and Mrs. Eva Medzorian put into the development of Tavush and the generosity you have shown has motivated all of us to work hard so that one day we may be able to help others, as you have helped those when they needed your support.”

Among those on hand to honor Jack Medzorian in person was Vigen Sarkysyan, the former Defense Minister of the Republic of Armenia. On the local political side, Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian and State Representative David Muradian of Worcester, Massachusetts both presented Jack Medzorian with proclamations. One was from the Governor and Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts and the other from the Middlesex County Sheriff’s office. Eloquent words of thanks and praise were also bestowed upon Mr. Medzorian by representatives of some of the many organizations that he is affiliated with. Among them were Yervant Chekijian, Chairman of NAASR’s Board of Directors, George Haroutunian, Commander of the Armenian American Veterans of Greater Boston, Ara Balikian, Chairman of the AGBU New England District Committee, Alisa Stepanian, President of the Cambridge Yerevan Sister City Association, Edward Kazanjian of the Council of Armenian Executives and Nelson Stepanian, New England District Representative for the Knights of Vartan.

There was no shortage of entertainment during the gala for Jack Medzorian. It all began with a performance by a soloist with the Erebuni Dance Ensemble. On the musical side, grandchildren Alex Medzorian and Angelina Faletti sang a toe tapping rendition of “Too Marvelous For Words”, made famous by Frank Sinatra, while their grandmother, Eva Medzorian, serenaded the guests with the ballad, “Hayasdan.” Eva Maria Medzorian expressed her love for her grandfather with a heartfelt message which she delivered with him at her side. Jack and Eva Medzorian were joined at the gala by their four children and four of their five grandchildren along with cousins and other relatives. It was his family whom Jack Medzorian thanked first when he stepped to the podium. He began by thanking his wife Eva, whom he described as beautiful in heart and soul and that they met while he was Superintendent of the Saint James Armenian Church Sunday School and she was a singer in the church choir. In thanking the clergy in attendance, Medzorian noted that when the Knights of Vartan was formed in 1916, it was founded mostly by clergy from all Christian denominations.

Mr. Medzorian recounted the experiences that had the greatest influence on his life including running his high school newspaper in Arlington, Massachusetts, serving in the US Army toward the end of World War Two and then helping to create what became known as the Cpl. Paul Marsoubian AMVETS Post 41. He also highlighted his more than 40 years at Baird Corporation where he started as a junior accountant and later became one of the company’s top executives. After acknowledging the many Armenian organizations with which he has been involved, Jack Medzorian turned his attention to the Knights of Vartan which he joined in 1986. He told his guests that the reason he joined was because he and his fellow Knights shared many common values including their Christian faith and preserving the ancient and rich heritage of Armenia. Medzorian described the formation of the Knights and Daughters of Vartan flagship School-Aid Program, an offspring of a similar program begun by CYSCA. He thanked the Robert Semonian Foundation and other benefactors for funding five border village kindergarten projects and most recently, a high school gym renovation in Artsvaberd and a women’s resource center in the border town of Berd in Tavush Region. Medzorian also talked about his involvement in the Armenia Medical Aid Project which began in 1997 through Ararat Lodge with the shipment of ten forty foot containers to hospitals throughout Armenia. Most recently, 5 ultrasound machines were donated including four portable ultrasounds through the Robert Semonian Foundation. At the conclusion of his remarks, Jack Medzorian announced that he and his wife would make a donation through Ararat Lodge to the Women’s Resource Center in Berd. He then expressed his appreciation to the gala’s planning committee, the Knights of Ararat Lodge, The Daughters of Arpie Otyag and all the volunteers and donors who made the event such a success.