BY DONIG DONABEDIAN
The Homenetmen Regional Executive announced that past Honorary Presidents of the games have come together this year to preside over this year’s 34th Navasartian Games.
Armed with tradition, Homenetmen seems to find ways to surprise the community, “pleasantly that is!”
Cloaked in tradition for ninety-six years, Homenetmen has given tradition its permanent home. One of the many traditional aspects of Homenetmen has been the role of the Honorary Presidents at the Navasartian Games.
A long succession of Honorary Presidents has graced the Opening and Closing of the games for decades. It will be no different this year at the 34th Annual Navasartian Games.
In fact, it is a special year for Homenetmen. With the soon to be completed new Regional Center in mid. July, Camp Tecuya, the Pasadena “Azadamard’s” new gym, Glendale Ararat’s newly purchased centers, as well as the Los Angeles Center currently under construction, one would say, there’s cause for celebration.
These celebrations have been led by the honorary presidents for decades, and have always risen to the occasion to pump class and stature into the games. “Supporting Homenetmen is our obligation,” said Dr. Sarkis and Tamara Arevian, 11th Honorary Presidents.
And since this is a special year, a number of previous Honorary Presidents have come together and have approached Homenetmen’s Regional Executive with the suggestion that, it would be a good idea if former Honorary Presidents got together and collectively assumed the responsibilities of the Honorary Presidency. By doing so, they would bolster the prestige of the Navasartian Games and along with it resurrect 33 years of memories, achievements, accomplishments and contributions, which have been tremendous to say the least.
“Homenetmen has a special place in our hearts” Hovsep and Elizabeth Boyajian, 31st Honorary Presidents. “It’s turning out to be a very special year,” said Shant and Vergine Haytayan, 30th Honorary President.
It is fitting to pay tribute and hold in high regard a group of this prominence, not because of what each of them did during their respective terms as presidents, but because each successive honorary president breathed new life into the games.
“Exciting times for Homenetmen and it feels great to be a part of it,” expressed Charlie and Julie Ghailian, 29th Honorary Presidents. Once their term was over, it didn’t just end there. Their support kept marching on, unhindered, unabated.
To the Honorary presidents past and present, Homenetmen is and will profoundly be that “Chalice” which is held high with the greatest of esteem and that which elevates the spirit of an entire community to soar in perpetuity.
For Homenetmen to have the luxury of former Honorary Presidents by its side is a testament to its powers of attraction and a vindication of sorts as the largest scouts and sports organization in the Armenian Community in the Western U.S., especially with more than 6,000 participants in the games and 1,200 scouts.
“Homenetmen and Navasartian has become a community tradition,” said Hratch and Marine Andonian, 21st Honorary Presidents. “The experience is truly everlasting,” expressed Vahagn and Baydsar Thomasian, 33rd Honorary Presidents.
On behalf of the Western United States Region, Homenetmen’s Regional Executive Committee would like to extend their warm gratitude to the Honorary Presidents for them taking on the task of making this year’s Navasartian Games special. “We salute them, and we honor them” said Steve Artinian, Regional Board Chairman of Homenetmen Western USA, “for all that they have done for Homenetmen, the community and the Diaspora at large.”
The Honorary Presidents of Homenetmen Navasartian Games
8th Navasartian – 1983
Mr. & Mrs. Vahan and Anoush Chamlian
9th Navasartian – 1984
Mr. & Mrs. Andy and Aleen Andonian
10th Navasartian – 1985
Mr. & Mrs. George and Alice Adamian
11th Navasartian – 1986
Dr. Sarkis and Tamara Arevian
12th Navasartian – 1987
Mr. Garo Soghanalian
13th Navasartian – 1988
Mr. & Mrs. Vatche and Tamar Manoukian
14th Navasartian – 1989
Mr. & Mrs. Mardik Hovsepian
15th Navasartian – 1990
Mr. & Mrs. Adom and Sella Tenjoukian
16th Navasartian – 1991
Mr. & Mrs. Vartkes and Flora Alahaydoian
17th Navasartian – 1992
Mr. & Mrs. Jirair and Serpoug Sarkissian
18th Navasartian – 1993
Mr. Kerop Arakelian
19th Navasartian – 1994
In Memory of Mr. Yervand Sisian
21st Navasartian – 1996
Mr. & Mrs. Hratch and Marine Andonian
22nd Navasartian – 1997
Mr. & Mrs. Garbis and Tereze Kemanjian
23rd Navasartian – 1998
Mr. & Mrs. Dikran Der Ghazarian
25th Navasartian – 2000
Mrs. Ashken Pilavjian
26th Navasartian – 2001
Mr. & Dr. Vatche Soghomonian
27th Navasartian – 2002
Mr. Albert Shahinian
28th Navasartian – 2003
Mr. & Mrs. Sarkis and Susan Kitsinian
29th Navasartian – 2004
Mr. & Mrs. Charlie and Julie Ghailian
30th Navasartian – 2005
Mr. & Mrs. Shant and Vergine Haytayan
31st Navasartian – 2006
Mr. & Mrs. Hovsep and Elizabeth Boyajian
32nd Navasartian – 2007
Mr. Varouj Bedikian
33rd Navasartian – 2008
Mr. & Mrs. Vahagn and Baydzar Thomasian