Meline A. Markarian of Banner Elk, NC, and Coconut Creek, FL, peacefully passed away in Florida. Meline was the daughter of John and Mary Kulhanjian, the owners of the famous Hye Hotel in Asbury Park, NJ, which was noted for its Armenian food, music and hospitality for thousands of Armenian vacationers in the summer months. Taking time from her music studies, Meline was the dining room manager of the hotel during the season. She earned her bachelor of arts degree from the University of Miami Frost School of Music and then continued her studies in France at the Fontainebleau School of Music, Austria, before advancing her lyric soprano specialized studies in Vienna, Austria.
In 1954, she met Berge H. Markarian, an obstetrics and gynecology resident who was visiting the Hye Hotel. They wed in St. John Armenian Church in Miami, Florida. The happy couple was blessed with the birth of two sons, David and Daniel. Dr. Markarian started his practice in Hialeah, where Meline was his office manager. With her strong belief in education, she became the president of her sons’ PTA. Due to her advanced knowledge of music, she was elected president of the Band Parents Association.
With her beautiful voice, Meline became a featured soloist in the Greater Miami area. At the same time, deeply involved with higher learning and music studies, Meline became Province President of the Sigma Alpha Iota (SAI) Music Fraternity, where she helped to developed chapters with the schools of music at Florida Atlantic University and the Florida International University, while working closely with the SAI headquarters in Asheville, NC.
After retirement in 1990, the couple bought a summer home in Beech Mountain, North Carolina, where Meline contributed her talents in the High-Country area. She became a founding member of the Appalachian State University Summer Music Festival and served on the Advisory Board of the University Library and School of Music in Boone, NC. Deeply devoted to the Center for Judaic Holocaust and Peace Studies at Appalachian State University, she also contributed her extensive talents to the Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, NC. With deserved acclaim, Meline was inducted into the University of Miami Iron Arrows Honors Society for her lifetime achievements.
Meline is the beloved wife of Dr. Berge H. Markarian, dearest mother of David (Solimar) Markarian and Daniel (Andrea) Markarian. She is also survived by seven grandchildren, two great-grandchildren and many relatives and friends. Under the care of Simon Javizian Funeral Directors, a private funeral service was held in Boca Raton, FL with Fr. Vartan D. Joulfayan officiating. The family suggests memorial donations be sent to St. Mary Armenian Church, 100 NW 100 Ave, Hollywood, FL 33024.