Monday, January 20, 2003

I don�t really feel like writing about this, but as it happens, death is something natural that does happen every now and then.

I got a call yesterday morning while I was sitting down for a meal of Khash from the grandson of Vartush Myrig, one of the people that a reader of ours helps out financially.

The grandson asked me where I was and said that he needed to meet with me right away as his grandmother has died, the financial condition at home is not good and if I can redirect the help I was giving his grandmother to them for a few months, that would be very helpful.

I told the grandson that I was busy and I would call him back in a few hours at which time we could discuss it.

Not one hour passed and I get a call from the grandson again, asking me if I had finished what I was doing and could he come see me as they were planning the funeral and needed me to help out with the meal they will serve after they lay his grandmother to rest. I was very short with him told him I was not done and would call him back in a few hours.

Just to give you a little background on Vartush Myrig. She was the exception to all the aid recipients as she was not receiving $50 a month in cash, but had the right to go to a store near her house to get whatever food and clothes she needed. We did this because the son she lived with was taking a good part of her pension (and would do the same with the $50) for himself, in return she had a small room under his house, which the deputy prosecutor when investigating her death described the room to be in worse condition than a stable (goom).

Before calling back the grandson, I called my neighbor to see what had happened with Vartush Myrig and learned that Vartush Myrig burned to death. From her waist to the top of her head was blackened. The police are handling it as a possible murder and the suspects now are the son and his wife. Though no one believes the son would do anything like this since he was benefiting financially, the bride on the other hand did not like Vartush Myrig at all and for years I�ve heard many stories of how the bride was abusive towards Vartush Myrig.

From personal experience with the son, I once let him make a repair on my car while Mama Manoogian and I attended a graduation 3 years ago and not only did he charge me 300% more than any other mechanic in Martuni would have for the repair, he also stole 10 liters of gas and a brand new bucket from my car.

Though there are many things about Vartush Myrig�s son that I�ve seen for my own eyes, the worst and maybe most insignificant, but hurtful that I�ve experienced was when I had her grandson pick 2 laundry baskets full of Pomegranates from my trees to take to Vartush Myrig, as Vartush Myrig and I had a deal when I purchased the house that belonged her only son who really took care of her (he was killed during the war) and that deal was that every year she would get a supply of fruit from the trees her son planted. Well that year after sending off the Pomegranates, Vartush Myrig told my neighbor that she was very pleased that I have been keeping my end of our deal, but this year since I sent the Pomegranates with her grandson and not given it to her directly, her son and wife picked out all the good Pomegranates and gave her the cracked and damaged ones. I was going to go and have it out with the son at that time, but my neighbor advised me that if I did that, it would only make things worse for Vartush Myrig.

Having all that information, I decided that it would be better that I not call the grandson back, but did call the store owner to tell him that under no circumstances are they to give Vartush Myrig�s family anything with the expectation that I would pay them for it. He told me that they had already come and practically cleaned out the store, but he would not expect me to pay for any of it and would make them pay for it.

Well today, Vartush Myrig was laid to rest next to her husband. I didn�t go to the funeral, but was told that it was well attended and my neighbor�s wife (who Vartush Myrig had once asked to be sure to attend her funeral and cry for her as no one will do that otherwise), attended and said that she cried, but not alone, as everyone felt very sorry for Vartush Myrig and the way she died.

Tomorrow I will go alone to visit Vartush Myrig�s grave and take her flowers.

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