Antranik Panossian was born to Manuel Chopourian and Zarouhi Maghserejian (both from Aintab) on Oct. 10, 1914 in Aleppo, Syria. He had two sisters, Victoria and Mary, as well as three brothers, Kevork, Krikor, and Zackar.
Antranik attended school in Aleppo from first through sixth grade. After sixth grade, he went to a French school for one year. He was not able to continue his education due to his father’s passing; he needed to work to help support his family. The entire family traveled to Beirut, Lebanon for work, where they lived for three years, and then went to Jerusalem to settle. Antranik joined the Homenetmen in Syria, where he was an excellent soccer player and in 1937 joined the ARF ranks.
On a business trip to Beirut, he met and fell deeply in love with Novart Ghazarian, the daughter of Badveli Haigozoon Ghazarian. After a short courtship, they wed on Dec. 19, 1945. After the wedding, they returned to Jerusalem, where Antranik continued his auto body business along with Zackar. His first son Manuel was born in Bethlehem on Jan. 5, 1948. Like many families at the time, war and unrest forced them to move to Amman, Jordan, where his second son Haigazoon was born on Dec. 28, 1949. Again unrest in the country gave them the opportunity to move to the United States. They set sail and arrived at Ellis Island in 1951. They settled in Philadelphia, where Novart’s sister lived, and later moved to Havertown in 1956, where their first daughter Lucine was born.
Antranik worked very hard to support his family by sometimes working three jobs. After a few years, he and Zackar opened their auto body business in Philadelphia. Many famous people visited their shop to receive excellent service. In 1967, they moved the business to Upper Darby, Pa., the same year Antranik’s second daughter Hasmig was born. He continued to work diligently until his retirement.
Antranik was a pillar to his family and community. He served as a role model for many other Armenian immigrants and, together with his wife, sponsored families in an attempt to return the opportunities they had received. Each of their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren were his reminders of a good, hardworking, and healthy lifestyle and serving the Armenian nation. He was in relatively good health until his sudden and unexpected passing.
He is survived by his wife Novart and their children Manuel and Elizabeth Panossian, Haigazoun Panossian, Lucine and Simon Essajanian, and Hasmig and Leonard Buckwaiter; his grandchildren Tony Panossian, Lori and Chris Wiseman, Ara Panossian, Sossi Essajanian, Dzovig and Sevag Parsehian, Sara and Mike Clauser, Sarkis Panossian, Johnny Panossian, and Anoush Essajanian; and great-grandchildren Zackery and Samuel Wiseman.