On October 26th, the American University of Armenia held its second Back from the Military Celebration for 25 students who recently returned from the military. Seven of them had participated in the April War in 2016.
The faculty and staff of AUA congratulated the soldiers and their families for their safe return. Faculty Member Donald Fuller shared his experience in the U.S Navy and wished the students the best of luck in all their endeavors.
Henrik Harutyunyan served in Martakert, Nagorno Karabakh. “When I came back from Karabakh, the contrast of the climate surprised me,” Henrik says with a laughter. At first, he couldn’t find his classrooms. “There were hard times, but the good memories are part of the experience as well,” adds Henrik. The two years seemed too long to him at first. Looking back, Henrik says that the two years passed in the blink of an eye. “One of the hardest periods was the Four-Day War. We could hear the whistles of bullets nearby and we couldn’t do anything about it. During those moments, my entire life would pass in front of my eyes.”
Mher Yerznkanyan is another student who returned from his service recently. He was not present during the evening, but his mother shared some of her memories from his service. “Mher was exempt from the military service because of eyesight problems. He worked on it and improved his vision to join the army.” Mher’s family was concerned about him during the April War. “We saw the list of soldiers that were killed. ‘Mher Yerznkyan’ was on the list as well. At first, I didn’t process what I had read. Panic took over me until I realized that the last name was different,” says Mrs. Yerznkanyan.
Shavarsh Muradyan served in Martakert as well and was still in service durig the April War. “Our nation’s safety was the only thing I could think about. The military service taught me a lot that I probably wouldn’t have learned throughout my life. My wish is for all soldiers to safely return to their families.”
Sanasar Ananyan, Lavrenti Avagyan, Arman Chilingaryan, Aram Dabaghyan, Gegham Dokholyan, Karotik Galstyan, Sevak Galstyan, Sargis Gasparyan, Hayk Hakobyan, Harutyun Harutyunyan, Armen Hovsepyan, Gor Khachatryan, Armen Mosiyan, Ara Nikoghosyan, Lesman Santrosyan, Arame Simonian, Henrik Harutyunyan, Spartak Harutyunyan, Narek Karapetyan, Grigor Nalbandyan, Garegin Tadevosyan, Mher Yerznkanyan, Hayk Malkhasyan, Shavarsh Muradyan: we warmly welcome you back to AUA and thank you for your service.