Roxie Haydostian Jizmejian of Fresno, CA passed peacefully in Clovis, CA on Saturday, December 7, 2019. Roxie was born in Boston, MA on March 23, 1932, to Mary Danayan Haydostian and Casbar Hagop Haydostian. The family lived for a period of years in Watertown, MA before moving to Fresno for the warmer climate. Roxie was just starting junior high. Following graduation from Roosevelt High in 1949, Roxie worked as a legal secretary. She developed strong shorthand skills, but she wanted more. She enrolled at Fresno State where she majored in English and Art History and earned her teaching credential. When she began teaching English at Bullard High, Roxie spoke with fondness of being the sponsor of the Class of '69, which recently honored her for having attended all of their class reunions. She finished her teaching career at McLane High. Throughout her life, she felt the best decision she ever made was going back to college and becoming a teacher. She loved every minute of it. For ten summers Roxie participated in the London Theatre Program through Fresno State. She loved her time in England, with its theatre, museums and concerts. This exposure to culture was central to her life. It was more important for her to go hear a piano sonata at a Keyboard Concert, a Fresno State Osher or Town Hall lecture, a Master Chorale performance, a Philharmonic symphony or an opera at the Saroyan Theater than to concentrate on a repetitive, mundane task. Roxie even performed with the Fresno Opera Association as a geisha in Madame Butterfly. Because of her passion for the arts, she gave generously to local cultural arts programs as well as PBS and public radio. Roxie was extremely proud of her Armenian heritage. She supported the Armenian Studies Program at Fresno State, attended Armenian dinners and lectures by scholars from Armenia, and never missed numerous gatherings and fundraisers for the Armenian cause. Roxie was preceded in death by her parents Mary and Casbar Haydostian, her beloved sister Sirvart Anna Clymer, her brother Jacob James Haydostian, her three nephews Paul, Jerry and Charlie Haydostian, and her husband Stanley Jizmejian. Roxie is survived by her niece Marie Waits of Costa Mesa and her nephews Jim Haydostian, Mike Jizmejian, and Keith Jizmejian, all of Fresno, as well as numerous great nephews and great nieces. She will be missed by her many friends from the birthday group, the Fresno County Democratic Women, the Dorcas Guild, her book clubs, and the "old gang" at Barnes & Noble. There will be a memorial gathering to celebrate Roxie's life on Thursday, January 16, 2020, at 11:00 a.m., at the Pilgrim Armenian Congregational Church, at 3673 N. First St., Fresno, CA 93726. Remembrances may be sent to the Pilgrim Armenian Congregational Church at the above address or to your favorite local cultural arts organization. Arrangements were made through Whitehurst Sullivan Burns & Blair Funeral Home.
Published in Fresno Bee on Jan. 12, 2020.