Painter Karapet Hakobyan in Armenia.
My grandfather was in an orphanage during the genocide. His teacher was Mihran Seraylian. Afterwards, my grandfather became a painter. He believed he was the only survivor, as he never received any information about his missing family. The only things he could remember were the names of his father (Hakob), mother (Khatun), and sister (Turfanda or Trfanda). He mentioned that his sister had boarded a ship heading to France and later to the USA while they were still children. As a result, he took his father’s name and added “yan” to the end to become his last name, Hakobyan.
In the orphanage, he also took writing classes from a French artist. After leaving the orphanage, he worked for the Air France company, where he drew their advertising posters.
Later, he met my grandmother, Anna, and they got married. A few years later, they moved to Armenia with their two daughters. My father, their son, was born in Armenia. While in Armenia, he reconnected with friends from the orphanage, including the artist Haroutiun Galentz (Kalenc) and the writer Antranig Dzarugian, who wrote a book titled “People Without Childhood.”
My grandfather found his peace in Armenia and did not want to leave his homeland. He passed away in 1996 at about 86 years old or older. Despite all the difficulties, he cherished the beautiful things in life.
I would really like to find my relatives, although I know that it is almost impossible due to having so little information.
Anna Hakobyan Private Coll.