FROM NOW on I will no longer receive his comments which I used to wait for excitedly every time I wrote an article for Al-Ahram Weekly. We will no more have fruitful discussions on social, cultural and sports issues. We will not share identity issues; how being Egyptian and also Armenian made us equally proud and how the love we had for both countries was incomparable.
Known to most of the Egyptian sports community, Dr Viken Djizmedjian, 61, a dentist by profession, left this world last week, leaving behind a huge number of followers, believers, family and friends grieving the loss of a bond of affection created by time, and leaving a legacy that he might not have known he already had.
Former minister of youth and sports Khaled Abdel-Aziz mourned the passing away of Djizmedjian: “God bless your soul my friend. You were a wonderful and knowledgeable person. We cooperated in organising the 2006 African Nations Cup and the World Youth Cup in 2009.”
“We lost one of Egypt’s sports administration pioneer,” former footballer and TV presenter Zakaria Nassef mourned him too.
Djizmedjian was a member of the Egyptian Football Association and former director of public relations and information for the Confederation of African Football (CAF). Ironically, his dedication to Egyptian and African football issues and his knowledge of rules and regulations eventually forced him to discontinue in the path he most preferred, for he disliked the corrupt atmosphere he found himself involved in. He was known for his fair and wise stands in all aspects in life, including in his football career.
An active member of the community, up until his death, Djizmedjian was chairman of the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU) Cairo District. He still had much to teach to the generations of today and tomorrow, so humble was he.
He was a dedicated fan of Egyptian football club Zamalek, believing his team had the right to be dubbed “African Club of the Century”, not crosstown traditional rivals Ahly, citing proof and reasons. He expressed his thoughts on the heated debate many times on various Egyptian TV talk shows.
Djizmedjian’s short illness never made his friends think he would leave so soon. His unique character left us all believing in miracles.
Djizmedjian is survived by his wife Aline and daughters Mané and Aspé.
Unfortunately, this time he will not be able to read or react to this piece.
*A version of this article appears in print in the 4 August, 2022 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly.