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Armenian genocide memorial restored after vandalism

Artist Gaspar Gharibyan finished the meticulous restoration process after the memorial outside the Colorado Capitol was damaged during the summer of 2020.

DENVER — As another humanitarian crisis unfolds thousands of miles away in Ukraine, it serves as a reminder of all the times before we promised to never forget.

The 'khachkar' memorial at the Colorado State Capitol is dedicated to the Armenian genocide that took place during and after World War I. The sculpture, which was first unveiled in 2015, was vandalized in the summer of 2020.

Credit: Simon Maghakyan


This week, artist Gaspar Gharibyan flew out from California and restored the memorial.

Gharibyan had to work meticulously to avoid causing even more damage to the memorial, which was also caused by good Samaritans who tried to clean off the graffiti.

Credit: KUSA


After consulting with the original artist in Armenia, Gharibyan determined he had to carve out another layer and essentially re-sculpt the sculpture.

"It's like same type of work as for dentist," he said through a translator. "You need to be careful, especially the small pieces."

Credit: KUSA


Gharibyan said he takes pride in restoring a monument that carries significant meaning for many.

"While I'm renovating it, cleaning it, I'm feeling very touched," he said. "Especially when I understand people will see it and it will touch their feelings as well."

RELATED: Biden recognizes atrocities against Armenians as genocide

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