LAKEWOOD, N.J. — Edward Aljian, 88, of Lakewood, N.J., passed away Tuesday, May 6, 2008, at his loving daughter’s and son-in-law’s home in Fredericktown, after a short illness.
Edward was born Oct. 1, 1919, in Jersey City, N.J., to Mary (Bouroojian) Aljian and Samuel Aljian. He graduated from Lincoln High School and was awarded a commission to the Merchant Marine Academy, training on ships for three years, and traveled extensively in South America.
As a child, he began his passion for fishing with his father from the rock jetties and surf in Seaside Heights, N.J. His earliest memories were of crabbing and swimming in the ocean with his cousins. Later, he became very proficient at fly fishing for trout, traveling all over northern New Jersey, New England and Canada with his own custom-made fishing rods and flies. He became renowned for his expertise in the art of fly fishing, selling and giving away much of his knowledge and homemade fishing equipment.
When World War II began, Edward enlisted in the Army Air Corps and flew many missions in the Pacific Theater as a “Flyboy.” He was under the command of Col. Tibbits flying B-29s, and was part of the covert mission to end the war with Japan. He was involved in many types of combat outfits until he punctured his eardrum while flying. Later, his mission was to travel the islands of the South Pacific repairing and maintaining diesel engines of power plants on military bases.
During World War II, Edward and Florence, a Registered Nurse, were just dating. When Edward enlisted, Florence wanted to enlist as well, but he wouldn’t let her enlist. She made a deal with Edward. “Marry me and I won’t enlist,” she said, and, as they say, the rest is history.
Edward worked at his family’s dry cleaning business, Ace Cleaners, in Jersey City, N.J., for many years. However, in 1950s when he developed an allergy to the harsh chemical fumes, he switched careers, and earned an apprenticeship in Photoengraving in Manchester, N.H.
After Edward and Florence retired, they began to travel all over the world to interesting places such as Morocco, Portugal, Egypt, Japan, Singapore, New Zealand, Australia, and many countries across Europe, and don’t forget the many cruises they enjoyed together as well.
Edward and Florence lived in Cliffside Park, N.J., for 30 years; Belmar, N.J., for 25 years; and Lakewood, N.J., for nine years. Edward had been vacationing at the Jersey Shore since he was 8 years old. While living in Belmar, they also summered in Bradenton, Fla., for 18 years.
In keeping with his social spirit, he often contributed to charities such as New York Columbia Presbyterian Children’s Hospital, St. Jude Children’s Hospital, and was a member of the men’s club of St. Stepanos Armenian Church in Elberon, N.J.
Edward was predeceased by his wife of 65 years; and his daughter, Lynn Suzanne “Peachy” Aljian.
He is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Deirdre “Dee” Lynn and Gregory Barnes of Fredericktown; a son and daughter-in-law, Mark Edward Aljian, D.V.M., and Naomi, of Adelaide, Australia; his four grandchildren, Chadwick Edward Barnes, M.D., Whitney Lucia Barnes, Jackson Edward Aljian and Harrison Aljian.
A memorial service will be held Friday at 2 p.m. at the Snyder Funeral Home in Fredericktown, where friends may call one hour prior. A memorial service will be held in New Jersey at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to Edward’s favorite charities, St. Stepanos Armenian Church and Hospice of Knox County.
The Snyder Funeral Home is honored to serve the Aljian family. This obituary and guest registry are online at www.snyderfuneralhomes.com.