Aghavni Zartarian (Born on 11 October 1926, Nicosia, Cyprus), widow of Krikor Assilian since 2007, passed away peacefully of natural causes in Beirut during the early hours of Monday 15 March 2021.
Aghavni, was the daughter of Parsegh Zartarian, a survivor of the Armenian Genocide who during 1915 was deported from Adana to Nicosia. Parsegh, had kept a key to his house in Adana, but he never returned. He grew up in Cyprus and got married with Gelun Keshishian from Beirut, who was also from Adana, but was deported to Lebanon. Parsegh & Gulen were established and lived in Cyprus and had four children. Mary, who married and survived Zaven Shekerdemian (both deceased), George who married with Anahid Nahabedian, Aghavni married to Krikor Kevork Assilian (both deceased) and Hermine, who married with and survived Garbis Kechedjian (deceased).
Aghavni lived firstly in Amiantos and then in Nicosia, where she attended the American Academy. After her marriage, she moved to Beirut, Lebanon. Krikor & Aghavni had three children, George, Maral and Vicken. The family remained in Lebanon throughout these years, witnessing the Lebanese civil war and recently the Beirut explosion on 4 August 2020. Throughout all these years, Aghavni was a staunch supporter of her husband and their family. She was a loving, most caring, practical, optimistic, forward-looking, devoted mother with a touch of stubbornness. Even though she was not familiar with the Arabic language, she made sure their children did learn Arabic and were brought-up as loyal Lebanese Armenians. The children attended various AGBU schools and were active members of AGBU taking part in sports, educational, social and scouting activities. Together with her husband, they succeeded to educate their children granting them higher levels of education who studied at various universities, in England, Lebanon and Armenia & obtained various professional qualifications. Aghavni and Krikor were also supportive with the upbringing and education of their grandchildren Sarine, Krikor, Greg and Tamar.
Aghavni was much loved and respected by her family, friends and relatives. She was an active participant in the life of the Lebanese-Armenian community for many years volunteering for charities and community causes and services. She had been a member of the Etchmiadzin Religious Women Union, the AGBU, and the Ladies Committee of St. Hagop Church in Ashrafieh.
Aghavni is survived by her three children, four grandchildren and two great grandchildren as well as by her elder brother, George and younger sister, Hermine.
God bless her soul and may she rest in peace.