By Jason KUROSU
A young Glendale resident was killed in Armenia just one day before he was set to participate in the 6th Pan-Armenian Games as a member of Glendale’s soccer team.
Levon Thomas, 20, of Glendale, died Saturday in an ATV accident. Thomas was representing Glendale for the two-week event held in Yerevan.
He graduated from Glendale High School in 2013, where he also played soccer on the school’s varsity and junior varsity teams. Thomas also worked as a lifeguard at the Pacific Community Center and was a member of the Boy Scouts through the nonprofit organization Homenetmen.
Hovig Chahinian, chairperson of Homenetmen Los Angeles Chapter, knew Thomas since he was 5 or 6 years old and was Thomas’ former soccer coach.
“He was a selfless individual, very hard working and extremely positive,” said Chahinian.
Chahinian said that providing a proper role model for children is one of the hardest parts of coaching, but that Thomas was that “model citizen who you would hope to see other kids emulate.”
Crescenta Valley Town Council Vice President Harry Leon was a childhood friend of Thomas’ father, Aram. Thomas also played sports with Leon’s son when he was younger.
Leon called Thomas’ passing “a tremendous loss for all of us.”
Homenetmen Western USA Region issued a statement on its Facebook page:
“It is with extreme sadness, that we share the unbelievable news of the passing of 20-year-old Y. Levon Thomas, Homenetmen soccer athlete representing our region at the 6th Pan-Armenian Games happening now in Armenia. Our condolences to his father, Y. Aram Thomas who is a member of the Homenetmen Western USA Regional Executive Committee, his mother, K. Lena Thomas, as well as the entire family and friends. During this extremely difficult time, our prayers and thoughts are with the family and we should all respect their privacy in grieving. Rest in peace Y. Levon.”
Thomas’ father and his younger brother, Shahe, are currently in Armenia for the Games, as part of Hollywood’s soccer team. Chahinian said that in remembrance of Levon, the Hollywood team sent 10 players to the field, leaving one spot open in Levon’s memory.
Thomas also leaves behind his mother, Lena and his sister Lara.