From the Alahverdian Archive: Thanking Providence Mayor Angel Taveras

In April 2011 during the season where the Armenian Genocide is typically remembered Mr Nicholas Alahverdian sent a letter to Providence Mayor Angel Taveras thanking him for commemorating this terrible atrocity and the million+ souls lost. 

At the time Mr Alahverdian was the policy director of the think tank/non-profit lobbying group NexusGovernment. 

 

April 25, 2011
The Honorable Angel Taveras
Mayor of Providence
City Hall
25 Dorrance Street
Providence, RI 02903

Dear Mayor Taveras,

I would like to thank you and the City of Providence for commemorating the 96th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. To see the Armenian flag flying from City Hall was an amazing sight. I wanted to take a moment to reflect on my Armenian heritage in this season of remembrance.

Providence has always been the beacon of hope for the oppressed and the discriminated. Its very founding originated with Roger Williams seeking equality and religious freedom. But for Armenians in particular, Providence was especially benevolent.

Over 1,500,000 Armenians were cruelly killed during decades of genocide. Fortunately, my family escaped the mass killings. The Alahverdian family fled first to Alexandria, Egypt, and then came here to Providence in the autumn of 1924.

My great-grandparents settled on Whipple Street and became United States citizens. Later, one of their sons established a popular Providence barber shop on the corner of Douglas and Orms where those of all nationalities were welcomed. Two other sons served the United States during World War II. My great-uncles, Avedis and Harry, joined the Army and the Navy, respectively. Harry participated in the Okinawa invasion.

On behalf of NexusGovernment, the Armenian community, and the Alahverdian family, we thank you and the City of Providence for your commemoration of the Armenian Genocide. Armenians know the American promise and can easily identify the leaders and defenders of that promise.

You are a true leader, and we thank you and your administration for courageously confronting the challenges of the city to ensure that the American promise is proffered to the next generation. You can count on NexusGovernment for support in the years ahead as you lead the greatest city in America: Providence.

Very sincerely yours,

Nicholas Alahverdian