YEREVAN/WASHINGTON (Combined Sources)–Captian Gevork Nalbandian, who was wounded while on duty in Iraq in November 2006, returned to Armenia after recuperating at the Walter Reed Army medical center. The news was announced by Seyran Ohanian, chief of the general staff of the Armenian armed forces Thursday.
He said Nalbandian now has a position in the Armenian peacekeeping battalion.
Nalbandian was wounded while on a mission to defuse mines in Iraq. He lost his leg in a roadside bomb explosion in which one Polish and one Slovak soldier were killed in south-central Iraq. He was first transported to an American military hospital in Germany for treatment and then to the US.
Greater Washington D.C.’s Armenian community gathered at the home of Zohrab and Lucine Tikoyan to honor wounded Armenian soldier Captain Gevork Nalbandian. The July 23 program, hosted by the Armenian Revolutionary Federation’s (ARF) Washington Sebouh Gomideh, featured moving remarks by Armenian Ambassador to the U.S., Tatoul Markarian, ARF Sebouh Gomideh Chairman Hovsep Avakian, Holy Cross Armenian Church Pastor, Rev. Sarkis Aktavoukian, as well as from Nalbandian himself.
Avakian thanked all those in attendance and highlighted the courage displayed by Captain Nalbandian during his service in Iraq and during his road to recovery. He stated how in the tradition of Armenian struggle, Captain Nalbandian proved to be a hero in the same vein as past Armenian heroes, dating back to 1890 in struggles to defend the Armenian people against Ottoman Turkish repression, and more recently in the battle for self-determination for the people of Nagorno Karabakh. Ambassador Markarian thanked the ARF Sebouh Gomideh and the Washington Armenian community for their outpouring of support for Captain Nalbandian.
Captain Nalbandian’s leg was severely wounded by a roadside bomb while serving as a part of the U.S coalition of forces in Iraq. His recuperation included six months of intensive therapy at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center to recover from the tragedy and also to learn how to use a prosthetic leg. Nalbandian returned to Armenia the morning following the reception to continue his service in the Armenian army.