Bedros' first wife, his deafness, and a little about his spirituality.

Started by Dr. Meroujan Ardziv Maljian, MD on Saturday, December 26, 2009


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12/26/2009 at 6:06 PM

The first wife of Bedros Maldjian in Marash, Turkey, was a beatiful woman named Elmast Moomjian. They were married in circa 1912. According to Maldjian family historian Francois Maljian, as a young man Bedros had a habit of serenading the women of Marash by playing the kemenche and singing from his balcony, as the famous Armenian minstrels of old did, like Sayat Nova. It was also in Marash where he earned his title of "Konsul" (or Konsolos as he was called in Aleppo) because he would wear fancy suits like the diplomats were wearing at the time. Elmast apparrently fell in love with Bedros by observing him serenading the village in this fashion and reportedly asked an intermediary to tell Bedros she loved him and wanted him to marry her. He knew exactly who she was, and his answer to the intermediary was "any time!" They had a daughter together, but tragically, both Elmast and the child succumbed to illness, possibly cholera. The mother apparrently died first, and then the child when she was about age 4.
Regarding the deafness of Bedros, it was well known in Aleppo that Bedros Maldjian was partially or totally deaf. Due to his intelligence, very sharp mind, and ability to read lips, this handicap was never a hindrance to Bedros until the end of his life. Bedros had fluent speech because he was not born deaf. Family stories explain that he lost much or most of his hearing as a result of a severe case of meningitis as a boy or young man. He was reportedly in a comatose state with a high fever for days from this illness, and some stories relate how he had a vision of Christ during this illness appear before him telling him that it was not yet his time to die (as told by his daughter Meleki Ohanian). He recovered. His other daughter Rosemarie Akian once said that when he was in the US, Bedros was offered the use of a mechanical hearing aid. After wearing it, he was observed to be responding to people's voices. But he removed the device and said that if it was God's will for him to have lost his hearing, then why should he change that or interfere. Like many Maldjians, Bedros appears to have had a tendency to be stuck in his ways. He was also a religious man of faith known to have made prophecies that later came true and very likely had other intense spiritual experiences, especially towards the end of his life.

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