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Popkin Simonian


1923 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Popkin Simonian Obituary
1923 - 2017 Popkin Simonian was born in 1923 in Chicago, Illinois to Krikor and Sirarpy Simonian, immigrants from historic Armenia. Popkin grew up in the Depression on Chicago's south side with his parents and two brothers, Harold and Arman. He loved football, baseball and hockey, and classical music. He graduated from Fenger High School in 1941 and was drafted into the Army (Air Force) in 1943. He arrived in Le Havre, France on V-E Day. He was discharged in 1946 and went to stenography school in Washington, D.C. on the G.I. Bill. He returned to Chicago and began working as a stenographer. He met Arpene Kitabjian, and the two married on August 9, 1953. His work took him to Alaska, where he traveled with a United States Senate delegation to transcribe public hearings on Alaskan statehood. He also transcribed public hearings held by U.S. Senate delegations in Illinois, and JFK's vice-presidential concession speech at the 1956 Democratic National Convention. Arpene and Popkin moved to Los Angeles in 1957. Popkin worked as a court reporter for the Los Angeles County Superior Court until he retired in 1986. Popkin dedicated his life to serving the Armenian Church and community. He served on the Board of the Ararat Home of Los Angeles for 14 years as secretary, and was secretary of the Building Committee during construction of the present facility in Mission Hills. Popkin served the St. Gregory Armenian Church of Pasadena since 1959 in many capacities. He sang in the choir for almost 10 years, prepared the church newsletter, served on the Parish council as secretary for two terms, and served on the Building Committee in the mid-1960s. He was ordained as a Tabir so he could read the English portions of the Sermon to the faithful. He was secretary for the Annual General Parish Assembly meetings for 20 years. Popkin was the treasurer of the St. Gregory-Hovsepian Armenian School for eighteen years. He served for over 50 years at the Ghevont Lodge of the Knights of Vartan in Pasadena, including over twenty years as secretary, six years as Secretary for the KV Grand (national) Council in the 1970s, and two years as Ghevont Lodge Commander, 1971-1972, and 1997-1998, when he received the Grand Council's First Place Lodge Merit Award. He also spent 20 years on the lodge's scholarship committee. In 2009, Popkin was bestowed the Medal of Saint Nerses Shnorhali from His Holiness Karekin II, Catholicos of All Armenians, in recognition for his lifelong service and generous support to the Armenian Church and community. He is survived by his many nieces, nephews and Godchildren. He was a sweet, generous, humble and honest man, and his jovial, fun-loving spirit will be greatly missed. Services will be held on Wednesday, February 15, 2017 at 9 a.m. at Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills, Old North Church. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Gregory Armenian Church, Pasadena, California, 2215 E. Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91107, (626) 449-1523.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Feb. 12, 2017
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