As Interviewed by Melina Takvorian, March 11, 2015
"And if you see your grandmother like that, who you love, it can't leave you."

Introductory Profile: About Hagop

My interview was with Hagop, a very close friend of my father, and someone who has known me since I was born. I found his family history very interesting and a great topic for my interview.

Hagop’s grandparents were victims of the Armenian Genocide. After surviving the horrors of the Genocide, they were given jobs in Canada, where they met and started their family before moving to the United States.

I conducted this interview with the prompt of social injustice. The Armenian Genocide fits perfectly into that category, because the genocide persecuted one group: the Christian Armenians living in the Ottoman Empire at the time. This interview had an overall tone of sadness, but it gave me better awareness of the genocide, because this really opened my eyes.

Hagop grew up in the Northeast and has a slight regional accent, but to me it represents what Armenians sound like. In his youth, he was involved in many peaceful marches through Boston to bring awareness of the genocide.

Hagop now lives in Austin and is actively involved with the Armenian community here. Among the many interesting things he has done for the community is planning the Armenian Genocide Awareness March 10 years ago, for the 90th anniversary. He also has many interesting stories to tell about his experience dealing with representatives of the Turkish community and government who are strongly opposed to any talk of a genocide against the Armenians.

In this interview, we talked about his family, we covered the social injustices being done to prevent the recognition of the genocide, and also talked about some of the general questions about the Turkish/Armenian relation today. Hagop talks about the stories that his grandmother told him about what she and all the other people that were persecuted were put through. I had read about the types of stories Hagop had told, but hearing it from someone whose family member had experienced it was different. It was more emotional and intense than when you read something online or in a book -- it is so amazing to hear things firsthand and really embrace the words and the emotion.