Long Time Activist Sarkis Atamian Passes Away

Long-time activist Sarkis Atamian passed away on December 27, at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage, Alaska. He was a long time member of the Wasalia community in Alaska. He was 82. He was born in Providence, Rhode Island in 1923. In 1933 he took his oath as a Tzeghagron under General Nejdeh. That organization became the Armenian Youth Federation, and Sarkis joined the Providence "Varantian" Chapter. In 1942, he won the first of three consecutive high boys scorer awards in the AYF Olympics. His triple jump record stood for twenty years. He served on the AYF executive council before and after World War II and was correspondent for the Armenian Weekly and contributing editor to the Armenian Review. He was called to active duty in World War II, trained as a field surgical technician, and served in four battle campaigns in North Africa, Italy, France, and Germany. Following the war, he attended the University of Rhode Island and did his graduate work at Brown University and the University of Utah. His master’s thesis was "The Armenian Community," published in 1955. He held an instructorship at U.R.I. In the 1950s, he was a member of the ARF Providence "Kristapor" Gomideh and delegate to three annual conventions. He founded the "Nigol Duman" Gomideh in Providence for the younger members of the ARF, moved to California, and served as a fieldworker and Central Executive member for seven years. He was instrumental in founding the ARF Western Regional Committee of North America, which he chaired for three years. In 1970 and 1973, he received the Honorary Life Membership of the AYF and the Olympic King Award, respectively. Atamian lived in Wasilla, Alaska. He is survived by his two daughters: Barbara Atamian – Sequeira and her husband Eugene, and Lenore Atamian – Chevalley and her husband Jim; gran’son Matthew Sequeira. Both daugherters were past AYF members and his daugher Barbara has followed her mother Ann and grandmother Tamam as a member of the ARS.

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