Los Angeles, CA – In a remarkable illustration of faith, dedication and continuity, an Armenian American grandfather, his daughter and his granddaughter all have dedicated their lives to advancing the Armenian Cause and supporting the work of the Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region (ANCA-WR). The trio, who call Glendale, California home, recently marked the 100th anniversary of Ghazaros Kademian – the family elder – by making a generous donation to the ANCA-WR.
Felicia Garver, whose grandfather Ghazaros is a genocide survivor, recently started working at the ANCA-WR offices in Los Angeles. “By serving as an ANCA Leo Sarkisian Intern I learned a great many things about Armenians, our culture, our history, and our country,” she commented. “I have met many ANCA leaders that have influenced my life a great deal, and they helped make me into the person that I am today. Being only half-Armenian, and being raised 19 years in a non-Armenian environment, I felt it necessary to learn about Armenians. Ever since my first phone call, and my first visit to the ANCA-WR office in Los Angeles, I felt a belonging, and a necessity to participate in the Armenian Cause,” Garver added.
The grandfather is Ghazaros Kademian, a 100 year old survivor of the Armenian Genocide. To mark his 100th birthday this past April and as cited above, Kademian insisted on making a very generous donation to the ANCA-WR to support the organization’s education and outreach efforts. Born in the beautiful village of Zeitoun in 1907, Kademian miraculously survived the Armenian Genocide and found a new home in Baghdad, Iraq. While in this newfound country, he helped the Armenian community by being an advisor and leader. A strong survivor of the genocide, Ghazaros and his wife Azadouhi raised three wonderful children; Ohannes Kademian, Asdghig Kaladjian, and Anahid Kademian.
On May 18, 2005 as a part of the Congressional Record, Congressman Adam Schiff (D-CA-29) honored Kademian noting that, “The courage of survivors like Ghazaros Kademian reminds all mankind of the extraordinary strength and determination of the Armenian people who endured the unspeakable atrocities perpetrated against them by the Ottoman Empire… …It is our sacred obligation to honor the memory of the one and a half million men, women, and children systematically murdered during the Armenian Genocide… …The story of Ghazaros Kademian’s family is terrible and tragic, but not uncommon. It is our responsibility to acknowledge the Armenian Genocide and collectively demand reaffirmation of this crime against humanity.”
The daughter is Anahid Kademian, the youngest daughter of Ghazaros Kademian. She was born in Baghdad, Iraq and came to the United States as a graduate student. Later, she became a United States Citizen in 1987, and has been a strong advocate for Armenians and non-Armenians alike; serving her community in appointed positions and in volunteer organizations. She has been a longtime supporter of the ANCA-WR and its grassroots efforts in the Western United States.
The granddaughter is Felicia Garver, who recently was hired to serve a summer fellowship at the ANCA-WR offices in Los Angeles. Felicia has been a Girl Scout since she was six years old and has served her community through several volunteer organizations. She has earned a number of awards, including the high honor of being cited as a Girl Scout Gold Award Young Women of Distinction. In 2005 Felicia served as an ANCA Leo Sarkisian intern in Washington D.C. where she contacted and researched each state’s Department of Education in regards to which genocides each state was teaching as well as the curriculum, mandates, and materials that they were utilizing. Felicia’s project was further distributed to STAND (A Student Anti-Genocide Coalition).
The Armenian National Committee of America is the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots political organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCA actively advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues.
Photo caption: Genocide Survivor Ghazaros Kademian (center) joined by his youngest daughter Anahid Kademian (left) and his youngest granddaughter Felicia Garver (right).