“I have never pursued my personal fortune and well-being. I have constantly sought only one thing – the freedom and prosperity of my nation. I do not seek recognition of my merits and only wish my people whom I have served my whole life to be happy.”
Andranik Ozanyan was an exemplary commander. He was glorified by his compatriots and respected by foreigners. In the last years of the Ottoman Empire, his battle feats have become the embodiment of the few cases when the Armenians resisted the Turkish and Kurdish violence both before and after the Armenian Genocide.
Having left the Ottoman Empire, Andranik began to fight against the Turks in Bulgaria, but he soon returned to Armenia to protect the Armenian populations of Artsakh and Zangezur in the times of the First Republic of Armenia. Along with Garegin Nzhdeh, Andranik protected the people of this lands from Azerbaijani aggression.
In 1919, Andranik arrived in the US to launch fund-raising aimed at helping Armenians who had survived the Genocide and also those who had had to flee because of the war. He managed to raise $500.000 (about $7.000.000 if adjusted for inflation).
Andranik Ozanyan died in California but was mourned for among Armenian communities all around the world. In 2000, he was reburied at the Yerablur military cemetery in Yerevan. The memorial on his grave reads “Armenian commander”.