GLENDALE (CBSLA.com) — The city of Glendale is grieving this week as local 20-year old Levon Thomas was killed in an ATV accident overseas.
Thomas was killed while in Armenia as he was there to participate in the Pan-Armenian World Games.
He was born and raised in Glendale where he also worked as a lifeguard for the city at the Pacific Aquatic center.
Thomas was a Homenetmen soccer athlete who was representing the Western Region of the US at the 6th Pan-Armenian Games occurring now in Armenia.
The “Homenetmen” were founded by a group of Armenians in 1918 in order to unite all of the Armenian athletic groups.
According to their website, it is their mission to, “prepare exemplary and law abiding citizens by providing physical and health education, endowing the mind and soul with the finest spirit of sportsmanship, and developing and understanding of responsibility and honor as they strive for individual and collective excellence.”
The Western Region that Thomas belonged too was founded in 1970, and has 18 chapters and 6,669 members, according to the group’s website.
Glendale Mayor Ara Najarian recalled how just two weeks ago, Thomas and the entire team were at a city council meeting for a big send off, as the city of Glendale sponsored the team.
“They were going to be flying the Glendale city flag with them during the competition,” the mayor said.
However, Thomas passed away before the games even began.
Pan Armenian Games released a statement saying the, “Pan Armenian World Games Committee expresses its deep condolences to the family, relatives, and teammates of the young man. It is so unfortunate that in his pursuit of excellence and pursuit of athletic competition this terrible tragedy happened.”