Edward Koshgarian

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Pioneer Press Online, IL Dec 2 2004

Koshgarian rug owner killed BY KAREN BERKOWITZ STAFF WRITER

A 78-year-old man who for decades ran a family carpet business in Evanston was killed Nov. 23 when he was struck by a sports-utility vehicle while crossing Central Street.

Services for Edward N. Koshgarian were held Saturday at St. James Armenian Church, 816 Church St.

The fatal accident occurred shortly after 5 p.m. as Koshgarian was leaving his cousin's Central Rug and Carpet Co., 3006 Central St., where the semi-retired Koshgarian continued to serve his longtime clientele. According to witnesses, he had crossed Central Street to go to his car on the north side of the street, but apparently decided to backtrack and return to the south side of the street.

Cmdr. Joseph Bellino said Koshgarian was standing at the double, yellow lines in the middle of the roadway, waiting for an eastbound bus to clear his path, when he was struck by a GMC Yukon traveling westbound. An Evanston fire ambulance arrived at 5:11 p.m. and took Koshgarian to St. Francis Hospital. He was pronounced dead at 9:23 p.m.

The driver, Ann Hunzinger, 53, of Gurnee, was ticketed for failure to exercise due care. She is to appear in traffic court at the Skokie branch of Cook County Circuit Court on Dec. 15.

The accident occurred 14 months after Merle Kingman, 86, and his wife of more than 60 years, Melva Kingman, 85, were killed when they were struck by a car while crossing Central Street at Prairie Avenue.

Koshgarian, of 3208 Bellwood Lane, Glenview, had been semi-retired since 2001, when he sold the building at 1911 Church St. that had housed the family's carpet businesses for 75 years.

Koshgarian's father, Luther Koshgarian, founded the carpet business in 1906. The family lived in a storefront over the shop and Ed Koshgarian began helping out in the business by washing rugs at the age of 8, according to the family.

He also accompanied his father on visits to customers' homes. As a teenager, he studied violin at Northwestern University and practiced three to four hours each day while continuing to work in the family business.

In 1944, he left high school to join the Army and served as a heavy artillery shell loader during World War II. He made a significant contribution during the Battle of the Bulge, according to his family.

In 1946, he returned to the family business, working with his father and brother Robert. He took over day-to-day management in 1954 with the death of his father, Luther. His brother Robert passed away in 1996.

He continued to play stringed instruments, including the mandolin, guitar and violin, and performed in several community orchestras.

"He was a genuine guy," said his son-in-law, Larry Farsakian. "He would go into somebody's home and if it was a good (Oriental rug), he would tell them, and if was bad, he would tell them.

"He presented it in a way that you were not insulted. After telling you that your rug was bad, he'd ask about your family and start talking about his family."

Mr. Koshgarian is survived by his wife of 47 years, Mary Anne Koshgarian. He also is survived by three daughters and sons-in-law: Wendy and Larry Farsakian, Janelle and Jeffrey Baderian and Eydie and Michael Pridavka.