School 17

Mary Fermanian

September 3, 1931 ~ June 28, 2020 (age 88)


passed peacefully at her home in Cranston on Sunday, June 28, 2020.  Born and raised in Providence, she lived an extremely productive and rewarding life in her chosen field of education.  She was a teacher in the Foster Glocester school system for forty years.  Her vocation was her life’s calling, a fact that was evident in her enthusiasm for teaching and her own life-long learning.  Children responded to her great sense of humor – her sense of fun was key.   She inspired young students for decades, many of whom kept in touch with her throughout her lifetime.  

Besides teaching in the public school system, Mary was the director of Sunday School at Sts. Vartanantz Armenian Apostolic Church in Providence for forty years.  She became an important piece of the fabric of her church community in many ways.  Besides directing the active Sunday School, Mary was a faithful church member and heartily supported the efforts of her church for her lifetime. 

Mary was also a life-long member and supporter of the Armenian Youth Federation. The organization was founded in 1933 and is a global educational, social, athletic and cultural organization for young people of Armenian heritage. She made lifetime connections throughout the country through the AYF and believed in its mission in fostering an ethnic identity.  

Mary was the daughter of Stepan Fermanian and Goulbig Bedrosian, survivors of the Armenian genocide of 1915.   She is predeceased by her sister, Gladys Fermanian and her twin sister, Queenie Haboian and her bother-in-law, Harry Haboian.    In her life’s work of service, she assisted her family’s grocery business in Providence and put off her own advancement as a teacher, until such time as she could earn her education degree from the University of Rhode Island.  She also became the caregiver to her beloved twin sister, Queenie, for many years during her retirement and worked ceaselessly for her well-being.  Mary is survived by many loving cousins.   

With a gentle and kind nature, Mary was also a determined individual.  She persevered for her own goals and thus was an example to others.  She had a love for so many diverse activities - she would be thrilled by a Red Sox or Patriots game as well as an evening at the symphony,  an afternoon at the museum,  a lecture at Brown,  a fantastic restaurant, a trip into the Big Apple or an afternoon on the beach.  Family and friends will miss her enthusiasm.

She was always ready to recognize another’s achievements and encourage them further.  She had a sincere interest in the well being of her students, family, colleagues and many friends.   She will be remembered for her caring and support of countless people throughout her journey.

Her funeral service to which relatives and friends are invited will be held on Monday, July 6 at 11 am at Sts. Vartanantz Armenian Apostolic Church in Providence. (Seating will be limited, social distancing and masks required.)  Burial will be private and visiting hours are respectfully omitted. Donations in lieu of flowers may be made to Sts. Vartanantz Church Sunday School, 402 Broadway, Providence 02909. Visit for online condolences.

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