Twelve Blinks of an Eye
There were Twelve of them...... twelve blinks of an eye, twelve spirits forever in our hearts and minds.


New Year's Eve brings the cold to Yerabloor. The icy and foggy air envelopes the silent area. Only graves, flowers and burning candles decorate the bleak atmosphere. It is a frigid and sad New Years but it is also filled with honor and pride. The bells of a church toll in the distance as people come and stand in silence by the graves. Pride wells within them, for they stand at the graves of their brothers and sisters. May God Bless their souls.

These are our twelve heroes. The first martyrs of the modern age Most of them were in their early twenties; they served their country unselfishly. Let us bow down and honor their graves and their memories.

The world stood by and watched on August 4, 1992 when the chaotic situation in Ardzvashen turned into a bloody confrontation. The 0-16 military troop of Vanadzor was defending the surrounding area from the constant military attacks by the Azerbeijanis. The Armenian soldiers completed their mission of evacuating more than 4,500 Armenian civilians from Ardzvashen within three days. Innocent women, children and elderly were delivered from the murderous hand of the enemy. From the 0-16, twelve brave soldiers remained to ward off the impeding enemy threats. On August 8, 1992 constraints of enemy attacks made the situation more treacherous. The two sides clashed and the battle lasted for 4 hours. Twelve brave Armenian youths, set against the Azerbeijani army, fought valiantly. After the battle was over, and after handing over the exhausted bodies back to the Armenian families, the Azeri General Rustamov was quoted assaying: They fought a bloody battle down to their very last bullet. Consider them your country's pride. These were the exact words of the enemy. Let us respect and honor their memories. Let us meet our brave freedom fighters who gave their last drop of blood to preserve innocent lives.

There were Twelve of them......
twelve blinks of an eye, twelve spirits forever in our hearts and minds.

Major Edward Avetisyan,
age 31, married, admired by his soldiers. In the words of his mother, "He was a serene person. He always personally took care of his country's, family's and personal needs.

Lieutenant Valodya Darpinyan,
born 1969 in the region of Taush, village of Karmir Akhpur. In 1987 he attended the military academy in the city of Pskov, Russia.

Ananya Smbatyan
had dreams of becoming a sportsman, however he instead became a weapons expert. His soldiers could always rely on him. His military staff knew that with Ananya there they would never lose. When his mother went to visit him at the military base, she asked him how he was doing. He simply smiled, and said: "Don't worry mom, no one dares to stand in our way. " The First Armenian Eagles were he were second to no other. "The Armenian people should have faith in us. Everything will be fine."

 Davit Mikalyan,
 born in Yerevan, Armenia, 1972. He was a musician before being drafted in the military. David was trained as an army medic. His father had this to say at his son's grave in Yeroblur:"I'm proud of my son, that he gave his life for his country, proud of what he did. I'm proud that my son is resting in peace next to our legendary leader,  Monte Melkonyan.

 Mxitar Chilingarian.
Born in 1972, Yerevan. A sportsman at heart, he serves with the " White Saviors" before being drafted to the 0-16; In response to a question he said: " We will show the enemy who we are.

Suren Yeryazaryan
born in 1971, Etchmiadzen. He was a solider by profession but did not like to lose. He was the first from his friends who volunteered with the 0-16.



There were Twelve of them...... 
Twelve blinks of an eye,
Twelve spirits forever in our hearts and minds.


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