Pasadena ANC Cosponsors Program Honoring Armenian Legion Heroes

Members of the Armenian Legion proudly flying the American Flag during World War I.

PASADENA, Calif.–The Pasadena Armenian National Committee is proudly cosponsoring a program highlighting an exhibit commissioned by the Armenian Library and Museum of America (ALMA) regarding the heroic service of the Armenian Legion in World War I.

The program, entitled “Forgotten Heroes – The Armenian Legion and the Great War,” will be held at the Pasadena Central Library (285 East Walnut Street) at 2:30pm on January 3, 2010.

The Armenian Legion was created during World War I to support Allied forces in their war against Turkey, Austria and Germany. Many Armenian Americans, including individuals from southern California, proudly served in the Armenian Legion. According to the ALMA exhibit, Armenian Legion recruits from the United States were shipped from New York to Marseille, France and then to a training ground in Monarka, Cyprus. From there the Armenian Legion fought in a number of decisive battles in World War I under the command of British General Edmund Allenby. Despite their bravery, Allied forces ultimately betrayed the Armenian Legion by accommodating the demands of Turkish nationalists at the end of World War I.

“We are proud to be cosponsoring a program illustrating the heroic efforts of the Armenian Legion during World War I,” commented Pasadena ANC Executive Director Ishkhan Boghossian. “One of the highlights of the Armenian American experience is that during the early part of the last century a small band of Armenian patriots left the comforts of home to fight for justice and liberty. We salute these individuals who risked their lives for a worthy cause,” added Boghossian.

The ALMA exhibit on the Armenian Legion was originally produced in 2001. Due to overwhelming demand, a traveling version of the exhibit was created and has been shown at various venues throughout the United States. The exhibit was made possible through a generous grant from the K. George and Carolann S. Najarian Foundation, with additional support by the Armenian American Veterans of Milford, Massachusetts.

The Pasadena ANC advocates for the social, economic, cultural, and political rights of the areas Armenian American community and promotes increased Armenian American civic participation at the grassroots and public policy levels.

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