FAROUGH FARMAN-FARMAIAN

Death Notice
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FARMAN-FARMAIAN FAROUGH FARMAN-FARMAIAN 1925 ~ 2014 Farough Farman-Farmaian, an engineer, investor and dedicated family man, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, passed away peacefully in his home in Bethesda, Maryland, on Saturday, March 15, 2014, at 88 years old. He died as a result of chronic lung disease complicated by pneumonia. Mr. Farman-Farmaian's life spanned nine decades and three continents. In his native Iran, he dedicated his engineering skills and knowledge towards the development of his country. He worked on major public works projects such as the Neka Power Plant Project (the largest power plant of its kind in Iran and one of the largest in the Middle East). In over three decades in London following the Iranian Revolution of 1979, Mr. Farman-Farmaian spent his retirement in the service of his family and community. One of 36 children born to Iranian Prime Minister Prince Abdol-Hossein Farmanfarma, Mr. Farman-Farmaian was fourth eldest of nine by Farmanfarma's wife Masoumeh Khanoum. He grew up as a young Persian nobleman at a time when the country was rapidly modernizing. His father raised the children strictly, including poetry recitals and fingernail inspections, and sent many away to Europe and America for their educations. Mr. Farman-Farmaian left for the United States in 1944, for a month-long journey that included a series of trains to Mumbai, India, and a U.S. military transport ship to California. He attended a preparatory school in New York before matriculating to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He completed an engineering degree there and married the late Laura Jean Reidelberger, of Nashville, Illinois. His first daughter was born in London while the couple were on their way to visit Iran. Engineering was a natural fit. Armed with a sharp mind, meticulous attention to detail, and a love of calculations, he worked for Philco, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where his next two children were born. Eventually, the young family moved to Tehran and added a fourth child, the youngest of three daughters. Back in Iran, he dedicated his engineering skills and knowledge to the development of his country. He collaborated with Foremost Dairy to establish the Pak Dairy company. Also, in 1956 he and his brother, Haroon Rashid, founded F & HR Farman-Farmaian Consulting Engineers which, over a period of 23 years until the advent of the Islamic Revolution, worked on numerous public and private projects. Their Company provided design and construction supervision services for the mechanical and electrical installations in numerous projects such as The Shah Abbas Hotel in Isfahan, the Tehran University Central Library and its College of Engineering. Later on, F & HR Farman-Farmaian Consulting Engineers collaborated with leading American consulting engineering firms to provide the design and construction supervision services for important public works projects such as Extra High Voltage Power Transmission Lines and The Neka Power Plant Project. The Islamic Revolution in 1979 upended a comfortable and prosperous life for Mr. Farman-Farmaian. Under the duress and threat common to his family and to Western-educated Iranians, Mr. Farman-Farmaian left. He lost his homes and businesses, and never returned to his country of birth. He settled in London with Parivash Moazed, where he began to invest in order to secure a continued income. Always interested in others, he generously gave his time and resources to the Iranian community where he was sought for his lucid guidance and useful advice. He contributed to Iranian cultural heritage by supporting cultural organizations, authors and academic institutions. He was also an avid supporter of Iranian charities for women and children. He strived tirelessly to keep his far-flung extended family together at regular gatherings. Along with several of his siblings, he helped organize and facilitate regular family gatherings in Iran and later in Switzerland for the family diaspora, thus reinforcing the family bonds. Mr. Farman-Farmaian enjoyed tennis, skiing and hiking. Late in life, he delighted in the birth of his youngest grandson and first great-granddaughter. He mourned deeply when his beloved eldest daughter, Lehla Dowlatshahi, passed away in 2011. Mr. Farman-Farmaian moved to Washington after becoming ill to be near his daughter, Susan. Mr. Farman-Farmaian is survived by many people who will miss him deeply. A memorial reception will be held on Sunday, March 23 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.. It will take place at The Atrium Room, Hilton McLean Tysons Corner, 7920 Jones Branch Drive, McLean, VA 22102.

Published in The Washington Post on Mar. 21, 2014
Farough Farman-Farmaian
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