Arizona Republic, AZ
May 6 2006

Lucy Mardian, wife of former mayor of Phoenix, dies

85-year-old called 'ultimate lady,' recognized for community
activities

Brent Whiting
The Arizona Republic
May. 6, 2006 12:00 AM


Lucy Mardian, wife of a former Phoenix mayor and a member of an
influential Arizona family, died Friday.

Friends said the 85-year-old Mardian will be remembered for her years
of service to Phoenix in a number of civic and charitable ventures.

"She was the ultimate lady, absolutely," said Anne Walsh, widow of
Mason Walsh, a former publisher of The Arizona Republic.
advertisement


"She was the type of woman everybody would like to have as a sister,"
she added.

Her husband, Sam Mardian Jr., 86, served as mayor from 1960-64. The
Mardians celebrated their 63rd wedding anniversary on Dec. 1.

"She was totally devoted to her children," said Sam Mardian III, 62,
oldest of the couples' five children, when reached at his father's
Phoenix home.

Dennis Mitchem, director of corporate relations for Northern Arizona
University, described Lucy as a warm and friendly person.

"She could laugh at herself and at things going on around her,"
Mitchem said. "She could lighten up things when political things
would sometimes get tense."

He described her death as a true loss to the community and to her
family.

Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon said, "Our thoughts and prayers are with
Mayor Mardian and his family for the loss of his wife."

Lucy served with the Phoenix Symphony Guild, Phoenix Art Museum
League and hospital, charitable and Kiwanis Club auxiliaries.

She had been in failing health for a number of months, said the Rev.
Peter K. Perry, senior pastor of First United Methodist Church.

It was always a joy to meet with the Mardians and hear them reflect
on the years he was active in politics, he said.

The Mardians moved to Phoenix in 1947 from Pasadena, Calif., to join
his brothers in the construction business.

Lucy Mardian, formerly Lucy Keshishian, was born in Cyprus on Oct. 6,
1920. Her family and the Mardians came from Hadjin, a small village
in Armenia.

Her parents and her husband's parents knew each other in Armenia but
went separate ways.

Lucy and Sam met in 1939 after the Keshishians traveled across the
country from New York to attend an Armenian picnic in California.

She is survived by her husband and five children, Sam III of Meyer;
Jim of Paradise Valley; Carol Pickens and Doug, both of Phoenix, and
Steve of Scottsdale, and five grandchildren.

Funeral services are set for 10 a.m. Thursday at the First United
Methodist Church, 5510 N. Central Ave.