Samuel Unjian (Tomasian), a beloved member of the community and a successful entrepreneur, passed away peacefully on December 22, 2023, at his home in Camarillo. He was born on September 26, 1930, in Niagara Falls, New York to Mildred and Armenag Tomasian. After the untimely death of his father when he was just three years old, Samuel moved to Windsor, Canada and lived with his grandparents Margaret and John Kevorkian. At the age of seven, he rejoined his mother and his stepfather Charles Unjian in Detroit, Michigan, where he assumed the surname Unjian.
Sam's adventurous spirit was evident from a young age. He attended Van Nuys High School where he played football for two years and served as co-editor of the school newspaper. Following high school, Sam pursued further education at a two-year junior college. His thirst for knowledge extended beyond the classroom as he continued to learn throughout his life.
In 1949, at the remarkable age of 19, Sam embarked on an entrepreneurial journey by opening a stationery and business products store in the Van Nuys area. His dedication and hard work enabled him to successfully operate the Office Supply Company until his retirement in 1995. During this time, Sam's commitment to his community shone brightly. He served as president of the Van Nuys Kiwanis Club and later became president of the Van Nuys Chamber of Commerce.
Samuel will always be remembered for his friendly demeanor and genuine care for others. At Office Supply Company, where he employed dozens of individuals, Sam made it a point to remember everyone's name and ensure they felt included. He had an extraordinary ability to make acquaintances feel like lifelong friends and knew no strangers.
Beyond his professional achievements and community involvement, Sam led a fulfilling personal life as well. One of his greatest passions was traveling. As an avid globe-trotter, he explored the world and shared his adventures with family and friends. From scaling mountains to enjoying the serenity of lakeside fishing in Mammoth Lakes, Sam loved immersing himself in new experiences.
Sports also played a significant role in Sam's life. He cherished alpine skiing, relished playing tennis wherever he could, and continued to golf even after suffering a stroke at the age of 80. Sam's determination on the golf course was exemplified by his Dee's unwavering support. She selflessly assisted him in teeing up the ball and would even hold onto his belt if the wind became too gusty.
Sam was deeply cherished within his family circle. He was preceded in death by his daughter Valerie Unjian Ellis, who passed away at the age of 51. He is survived by his loving partner Donita Horn, his devoted daughter Debra Unjian, son-in-law Dave Ellis, and two cherished granddaughters, Sabreena and Victoria. Additionally, Sam leaves behind his beloved brother Ronald Unjian and sister-in-law Linda Unjian.
A funeral service to celebrate Samuel's remarkable life will be held on January 18, 2024, at 12:00 PM at Forest Lawn - Hollywood Hills - Old North Church located at 6300 Forest Lawn Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90068. Family and friends are invited to pay their respects during this solemn occasion.
Samuel Unjian will be remembered as a remarkable entrepreneur, philanthropist, adventurer, and loving family man. His infectious joy for life brought light into every room he entered. While we grieve his loss deeply, we find solace in knowing that his legacy will live on through the memories he created with all those fortunate enough to have known him. May he rest in peace.
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