Sarkis Kojoyian of Westboro, Mass., passed away on Mon., March 9, after a two-year battle with cancer. He was 84 years old.
Sarkis was a lifelong resident of Westboro, and was the son of Vahan and Miriam Kojoyian, who both predeceased him in 1967.
In his youth, Sarkis ran his family’s poultry and vegetable farm on Route 9 in Westboro. The farm was honored by the U.S. government for providing food for the war effort in the early and mid-40’s. He graduated from Westboro High School in 1943 and attended the Worcester Art Museum School. He later became the founder and president of Belmont Properties and was responsible for the development of major portions of Route 9 in Westboro, which had previously been the Kojoyian family farm and other properties he had acquired. Sears, Levitz Furniture, Somerville Lumber, and automobile dealerships were among his tenants.
Sarkis was a well-known and active figure in his community. He served as chairman of the Planning Board, and numerous other boards and committees, in Westboro for many years. He was honored for his longstanding contributions to the Westboro Fire Department and had been a member of the Siloam Masonic Lodge since 1948. Sarkis Kojoyian was an authority on and avid collector of antique automobiles, and was the founder and first president of the Antique Automobile Club of Massachusetts. He donated an antique airplane, and other items of historical significance, to the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.
Sarkis was a member of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF). He was a member of the Armenian Youth Federation (AYF) in his youth, and was sworn into the organization by General Karekin Njdeh, the founder of the AYF. He also for many years served as the chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Armenian Apostolic Holy Trinity Church in Worcester, Mass. In that capacity, he was the aide to His Holiness Karekin I Sarkissian, the Catholicos of the Holy See of St. Etchmiadzin and Supreme Patriarch of Armenia’s Holy Apostolic Church, when his Holiness visited Massachusetts and the Kojoyian family home.
Sarkis was also involved in the creation of Camp Haiastan in Franklin, Mass., and donated many of the original cabins that were there in the early years of the camp’s existence. He was also a member of the Armenian Men’s Club.
Sarkis Kojoyian is survived by his beloved wife of 59 years, Rose Garabedian Kojoyian; a son, Gregory Kojoyian; a daughter, Melanie Kojoyian; a brother, Avedis Kojoyian of Virginia; nephews, Art and Armen Kojoyian; and grandnephews, Zachary Kojoyian and Michael Kojoyian.
A Memorial Service was held on March 16 at the Armenian Apostolic Holy Trinity Church. Donations in lieu of flowers can be sent to the Armenian Apostolic Holy Trinity Church, 635 Grove St., Worcester, MA 01605.