This spring our family marked a sorrowful milestone with the passing of our beloved husband, father, and grandfather, Dr. Raffy Hovanessian. Speaking as his family, the loss of Raffy was an occasion of deep private grief. But as the news of his passing spread, we received an incredible outpouring of sympathy and love from every quarter of the Armenian community.
We can hardly convey how profoundly touching this was to us. The past months have been a time of terrible distress for everyone. It has been a time when we were denied the physical closeness of friends and family that has always been a major part of Armenian life. Yet even in such a time, so many people set aside their own troubles to share their beautiful words of comfort with us, and to generously support the educational fund established in Raffy’s memory.
Messages came from across the United States and Canada, and as far away as Australia, Argentina, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the Middle East. It would be impossible to do justice to them all; but we do wish to acknowledge our special debt to Bishop Daniel Findikyan, Archbishop Anoushavan Tanielian, Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, and Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian, for the spiritual consolation they offered in our time of need.
Please know that our family is eternally grateful to you all. Every word in every message is a treasure that will warm our hearts, whenever we think back on this time. Your expressions of kindness will remind us, above all, of the Armenian spirit that Raffy loved throughout his life: the noble spirit that led him to devote so much of his life to the good of the Armenian people.
In this uncertain time, when all of us are occupied with concerns for our struggling people in Armenia, Artsakh, and now Beirut, we feel truly humbled by the gracious kindness you have shown to the Hovanessian family. Thank you for honoring Raffy’s life in this beautiful way. You are all in our hearts and prayers, forever.
Vicki Shoghag Hovanessian and Family