In Loving Memory of Leo Kricorian

1940-2020

Leo Kricorian 1940-2020 (Photo by Ed Kricorian)

Leo Kricorian passed away on Friday, May 15, 2020 from complications of COVID-19. Leo was a lifelong resident of Watertown, Massachusetts and a member of the Watertown Evangelical Church. He was born on August 4, 1940 at Saint Elizabeth’s Hospital in Brighton. He was the son of Leo (Levon) and Mary (Mariam) Kodjababian Kricorian, brother of Edward, Dan and Grace Carter. He is survived by nieces Linda Carter Rose, Debbie Carter Kirkpatrick, Nancy and Susan Kricorian, nephew David Kricorian, sister-in-law Irene Kricorian, and long-time companion Joan Butler.

Music was the passion of Leo’s life, and in his youth he was the front man for the bands Leo and The Thunderbirds and Leo and the Rhythm Rockers. He wrote music and lyrics, and recorded several songs under the name Leo Scott. He was the lead guitarist for the Andy Healy Band starting in the late 70s. Andy Healy said of Leo, “He truly loved the Irish music scene, and he was front and center with our band. He was always very dependable, and he was never late for a gig in the 37 years he played with us.” Leo was also known as a guitar teacher, and one of his early students was guitarist, composer and educator John Baboian.

A memorial service will be scheduled at a later date once pandemic restrictions are lifted. Memorial donations may be made to the Watertown Evangelical Church or The Maristhill Nursing Home COVID-19 Response Fund.

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Nancy Kricorian is a writer and organizer who lives in New York. She is the author of three novels focused on post-Genocide Armenian Diaspora experience—ZABELLE (1998), DREAMS OF BREAD AND FIRE (2003), and ALL THE LIGHT THERE WAS (2013). She is currently at work on her fourth novel, which is about an Armenian family in Beirut during the Lebanese Civil War.
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@NancyKric

Writer. Most recent novel, ALL THE LIGHT THERE WAS. She/Her.
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6 Comments

  1. I have nothing but fond memories of Uncle Leo. He was always kind and entertaining to us kids in the neighborhood. So sorry for your loss.

  2. Thank you for the condolences and the remembrance. He was an original. I didn’t include this in the obituary, but he was a Junior Yo-Yo Champion of New England when he was 12 years old. When I was really small I couldn’t pronounce LEO and so I called him Uncle Yo-Yo. He was always doing yo-yo tricks for me.

  3. Leo loved his guitar and his music! He would play for me whenever his brother, Dan and I would visit. I remember how taken he was with baby Danny, Jr. when we brought him home to Watertown on a visit in 1958. Leo was always kind-hearted and curious, and he loved Dunkin Donuts! He was the last of his generation to leave for that
    bright Home without pain or sorrow. My condolences to family members and much gratitude to those who cared for him, especially his sister-in-law, Irene Kricorian.

  4. God bless Leo, he will be truly missed. I will always remember him as a friendly
    gentle man with a twinkle in his eye. He so loved his Sunday worship.

  5. Fond memories of Leo who I knew for 65 years. First met him at an 8th gade dance at the Eat Junior HIgh School in Watertown wheere Leo and the Thunderbirds played and Arnie “Woo Woo’ Ginsburgh the WMEX disc jockey was host.
    In later life we had many opportunities to sit and reminisce at the Dunkin in Coolidge Square. A great talent who will e missed.

  6. Martha Mae (Bilezikian) McCool from California, wrote on May. 19, 2020
    I grew up in Newtonville, Massachusetts, and attended the same church that Leo attended from the time we were toddlers until we became young adults . . . those who stayed in the Boston area, continued to attend. Since I had moved out of state, I lost touch with many of my friends and relatives who attended and were original members of that church. My great uncle (The Reverend Vartan Bilezikian) was the first pastor of this church which at that time was called The United Armenian Brethren Evangelical Church. I understand that the name of our church was later changed. It was truly a “family church” where most of the parishioners were genocide survivors who pooled their meager resources to build the church . . . a place where they could worship freely. As kids, we would race around the church’s basement where the Sunday School teacher tried to quiet us down . . . keep us better behaved . . . but it was so much fun to reunite with all the kids every Sunday. Leo was a good friend, and about the same age as most of us kids (born around1940-1945) . . . Leo was a blast . . . very talented musically, and we always looked forward to that moment in the service when the “children’s choir” (aka us unruly kids) would assemble to sing a cute song (giggling, singing, and laughing all at the same time) while accompanied by our very talented friend, Leo, playing the guitar. Leo, you will be missed, but I know you are making beautiful music up there with our loved ones.

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