Armenian genocide survivors share stories of loss and regret

"And every few steps he would turn and wave. She would wave back, until he just couldn't see her anymore."

Thousands marched through downtown Montreal to honour victims and call for genocide prevention

Caroline Nammour: "He couldn't carry her anymore"

7 years ago
Duration 0:53
A descendent of survivors tells the painful story of how a relative had to be left behind during the Armenian genocide.

Caroline Nammour says the story from the Armenian genocide that has marked her more than any other is the one about her mom's great uncle, who had to leave his mother behind in the desert.

"At some point he couldn't carry her anymore so he told her that he was going to get some water and he put her under a tree and he left. And every few steps he would turn and wave. She would wave back, until he just couldn't see her anymore," Nammour said.

She was one of thousands who attended a march for humanity and genocide prevention on Sunday in Montreal.

Celine Kuyumcu says half of her mom's family was killed during the genocide

7 years ago
Duration 1:10
Celine Kuyumcu's mom marches every year to mark the Armenian genocide, even though she needs the help of a walker.

An estimated 1.5 million Armenians were killed during and after the First World War, rounded up and executed by Ottoman authorities. Many died after being forced to march into the desert in present-day Syria.

Anahit Voskericyan Kuyumcu (left) has passed on her family's stories of survival during the Armenian genocide to her daughter, Celine Kuyumucu (middle) and her grandchildren. (CBC)

At Sunday's walk, the descendents of survivors shared their painful stories, with a message that people can't sit idly by and allow something like that to happen again.

How Levon Afeyan's grandfather survived genocide

7 years ago
Duration 1:11
Thanks to some German officers, Afeyan's grandfather escaped being killed