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A Great Man Passed Away: General Fatollah Minbashian (1915-2007)

By Sepehr Haddad
I received a phone call on the eve of the 4th of July while we had gathered with family to barbeque, as most in the US do, on Independence day.  The call was from my cousin in Paris, giving me the news that my uncle, Fatollah Minbashian had passed away half an hour before his call.  Telling my mother the news was very difficult; however, I was relieved that she was with us when we got the news so that we could console her a bit.

General Minbashian in 1972
Fatollah Minbashian was truly a great man, from a different era.  As a child, he always reminded me of James Bond, and I always wanted to be like him, for he was handsome, talented, an athlete (goal keeper for the Iranian national soccer team), a poet, a songwriter, a musician (virtuoso violinist), spoke several languages fluently, and the list goes on and on.  In terms of his career, he was a 5 star general (Arteshbod) Commander of the Iranian Armed forces until 1974 when he left the armed forces and retired in Paris.  Most importantly he loved Iran and the army, not the institution as much as the individual soldiers that comprised it. He cared for their living conditions, their salaries, their health care and was always surprised why more was not being done by the government they were serving, to make their lives better.
Readers who are too young to remember his great service to his country, may remember his name since two of the songs he had written in his youth, "Anzaman" and "Negahe-Yar-e Man" that I re-recorded were presented here in the recent past. I am honored to be able to keep his memory alive through these songs. We will all miss him dearly.

... Payvand News - 7/9/07 ... --

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