Niagara Gazette

Ohannes John Avdoian, 87, of Niagara Falls, NY, passed away peacefully
at home on Saturday, May 28, 2011. Born aboard the SS Mexico, he was
the son of Sahag and Gulizar (Der Ohanesian) Avdoian who had left
their ancestral homeland of Van, Armenia, in the aftermath of the
Armenian Genocide.

With his family he came to Niagara Falls. He attended local schools,
graduating from Niagara Falls High School in 1942. He began taking
aviation lessons in order to fulfill his desire to become an airline
pilot and in 1943 enlisted in the Army Air Force with the rank of
aviation cadet. He became an aerial gunner, receiving his aviation
badge as a member of the 3701st Army Air Force Base Unit. He was
awarded the American Theatre Service Medal and the World War II Victory
Medal and was honorably discharged in November of 1945. He considered
his years as a pilot his life's highest accomplishment and a source
of honor and pride for the rest of his life.

He then went to Cleveland, OH to become a licensed Master Butcher.

Returning to Niagara Falls, he with his brothers opened Avdoian Bros.

Groceries at the corner of 7th St. and Pine Ave. The store was a
fixture there for 47 years where many citizens of the city to this
day remember going for their penny candies and other treats. True to
the generous spirit instilled in them by their father, Sahag, many
were the times the Ohannes and his brothers filled needy customers'
grocery bags with much more than the money tended accounted for. As
he and his brothers took turns working the store, he also became a
full time employee of the U.S. Postal service as a mailman, retiring
in 1986, after 25 years of service.

On May 3, 1950 he married Lucille Lucia Kakligian. She predeceased
him on January 11, 2008, after 57 years of marriage. He was a very
proud and loving grandfather to his five grandchildren who made his
eyes light up with joy when they visited or called.

In his retirement he and his wife enjoyed spending the winter with
their daughter in Las Vegas. In his mid-70's he enrolled at U.N.L.V.

taking aviation courses, giving him the opportunity to once again
soar through the air piloting an airplane. Even as illness confined
him to a wheelchair he thoroughly enjoyed his frequent visits to OTB
on Main St. to join his buddies in seeing how the ponies were doing.

He was a Buffalo Bills fan and an avid sports fan, rarely missing
the chance to wager a small bet on a game.

John is survived by his son, Richard (Nancy) Avdoian of Fairview
Heights, IL; daughters, Deborah (Albert) Amato of Niagara Falls
and Pamela Avdoian of Las Vegas, NV; five grandchildren, Alexan
Avedis Amato, Esq., Karine Lucia Amato, Gregory Ara Avdoian, John
Nishan Avdoian and James Sahag Avdoian; his brother, Arthur (Mary)
Avdoian of Niagara Falls, NY; two sisters, Margaret Avdoian of Niagara
Falls, NY and Rosalind (late Michael) Mashoian of California; loving
sister-in-law, Shamiram (late Hrant) Kezirian; special cousin-in-law,
Takouhie Kakligian of Illinois; also survived by many cousins, nieces,
nephews, one great-nephew and one newborn great-niece. In addition
to his wife and parents, he was predeceased by infant twin sister,
Margrid; brother, Arsen (Alice of Niagara Falls, NY) Avdoian; and
beloved nephew, Gregg Avdoian.

He was a member of the American Legion and the Armenian Veterans
Organization. He was also a devoted communicant member of both St.

Sarkis and St. Hagop Armenian Churches in Niagara Falls.

Visitation will be on Wednesday from 4-8 PM at the M.J. COLUCCI &
SON NIAGARA FUNERAL CHAPEL, 2730 Military Road, Niagara Falls, NY. In
addition to officiating at the funeral, prayers for the repose of his
soul will be at 7:30 PM led by the Very Rev. Fr. Keghart Kosbakian,
Rev. Fr. Serop Azarian and Rev. Fr. Datev Melingitchian, and assisted
by his son-in-law, Deacon Albert Amato. The funeral service will be
held on Thursday, June 2nd at 10:30 AM at St. Sarkis Armenian Church,

Interment with Military Honors in Riverdale Cemetery, Lewiston, NY.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that to honor his wish memorial
donations may be made to St. Nersess Armenian Seminary, 150 Stratton
Rd., New Rochelle, NY 10804 to be used for the education of future
priests of the Armenian Apostolic Church in America.

Visit www.mjcoluccifuneralchapel.com for on-line guest register.

2011 The Associated Press.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress