The Heroic Defense of Van is a lasting tribute to the valiant sons of VASBOURAGAN whose indomitable courage and a willingness to die for their Fatherland were the dual traits that proved to be the salvation of the Armenian Nation.

Authors of many nations have perennially penned the praises of these descendants of Haik and justifiably so, for had it not been for their tenacious Vanetzi spirit and burning love of country, Armenia would never have survived.

Because of the honor it tenders these truly great heroes, the Central Executive Committee of the General Society of VASBOURAGAN gratefully acknowledges the effort of those who in some way contributed to the ultimate publication of this book.

The Committee is mindful of the personal sacrifices various individuals made to become contributors to this volume and is lastingly grateful to them.

In most book publications credits are freely given and The Heroic Defense of Van shall be no exception.

Samuel Tarpinian, who translated ONNIG MEKHITARIAN'S book to produce this volume, must head the list of those being credited, for his patience and skill have given us a record of lasting importance.

Heartfelt appreciation is expressed to the great William Saroyan, Pulitzer prize winning novelist for thought-provoking Foreword to this work.

Bedros Toukhanian, the artisan, is responsible for the photographs that appear throughout the book.

Kegham TAZIAN, artist, sculptor and teacher fashioned the art work that graces the translated effort.

HAIGAG GOSSOIAN and Father OSHAGAN MINASSIAN provided the invaluable source material.

Dr. Richard BOOLOOTIAN and Leila Johnson comprised the editing staff.

Sarkis Kassouny had the book printed.

It is hoped that new generations of Armenians, VASBOURAGAN or otherwise, will be inspired by the heroic actions of a generation of compatriots whose deeds of valor may never again be equaled.

It is finally hoped that the blessed memories of these brave heroes of Van never pale in the memory of the Armenian Nation-the Nation they so loved and fought so heroically to defend.

It is firmly believed that even the rains of a thousand years could not now diminish the recorded valor of these noble men of Van.