The New York Hockey Journal has published an article about Zach Bogosian, the first player of Armenian heritage to play in the National Hockey League.
Winnipeg Jets defenseman Zach Bogosian’s great-grandfather, Stephen, escaped Armenia in the early 1920s to get away from the genocide perpetrated on his countrymen.
The Bogosian family wound up in upstate New York, and Zach, a natural athlete at a young age, had a decision to make early on. He could follow his dad into American football (Ike was co-captain of the 1980-81 Syracuse University teams that featured future New York Giants running back and Super Bowl champ Joe Morris) or pursue a career in hockey.
Hockey won and Zach never looked back. And he’s proud of the fact that he’s a bit of a pioneer.
“Yeah, growing up with an Armenian heritage … you know, my grandparents are still pretty hardcore about it,’’ he said. “My great-grandfather came across when the genocide started.
“It’s just a hard-working family from a small town. I mean, if I can do it, anyone can do it. As far as being the first Armenian, obviously I’m very proud of it. But it’s not just on me; it’s on my parents and everyone who helped me throughout my whole career.
“It’s kind of fun to have that (first Armenian) next to your name.’’