By Robin GOLDSWORTHY
In May, the Kiwanis Club of Glendale made a special presentation as part of its Fulfill A Dream program. According to the Kiwanis’ website, each year the Fulfill A Dream committee looks for a child or young adult from the Glendale Unified School District who is facing a great challenge, demonstrating inspiring courage, and serving as a bright light to those around them. They are honored, recognized and celebrated to help strengthen and empower them as they move forward on their journey.
This year’s recipient was Anabell Torabyan who attends Crescenta Valley High School. She attended the May Kiwanis Club luncheon and presentation with her parents Ararat and Anita and her brother Andrew.
Kiwanis Club vice president and Fulfill A Dream committee chair Shant Sahakian shared some of the Torabyans’ story with those attending the luncheon.
Ararat and Anita immigrated to the United States in the early 1990s. The family has met health challenges in recent years. Ararat was diagnosed with leukemia in 2009 and oral cancer in early 2015. Shortly after this last diagnosis, Anabell was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Her diagnosis necessitated that she be homeschooled while undergoing chemotherapy. Despite this, she maintained straight As in her studies and achieved a 4.0 GPA. She plans on rejoining her classmates at CVHS this summer.
In attendance at the luncheon was Dr. Ilin Magran, coordinator II, Student Support Services/Healthy Start.
“The minute I walked into [the Torabyan] house I saw the positive energy and the kindness in them. Anabell and her mother are very positive and optimistic that things are going to work out and she is able to recover and go back to CV High and enjoy her high school years as a young bright girl,” said Magran. “I will always be on her side with whatever she may need, whether it is social emotional support or educational and guidance in which classes and direction to take in life.”
Anabell loves math, science and Greek mythology. At the luncheon she was presented with several gifts to build on these interests including an autographed copy of the book “Trials of Apollo,” the latest in a series that Anabell is particularly fond of. Glendale Community College also sent a Greek arrowhead from the Greek Bronze Age dating to 400 BC and offered a private tour of the GCC Planetarium. The Getty Museum will also provide a private tour of the Getty Villa and Museum, which includes many artifacts from Greek mythology. Additional gifts included TV show tickets, a tour of DreamWorks and tickets to Universal Studios, among others.
Ararat, whose oral cancer is in remission, thanked the Kiwanis Club members for their generosity.
“I don’t think ‘thank you’ is enough,” he said. “We need better words in our dictionary.”