PALMDALE – The city of Palmdale has named John Parsamyan, owner of Armed Services Autobody, as the 2020 Veteran of the Year.
“John was a very obvious choice this year,” said Palmdale Mayor Steve Hofbauer. “I’ve seen the work he does at his shop, how he teaches and trains other veterans, and how he gives so much back to the community with food drives and donations. As a resident of Palmdale, I appreciate all he does.”
Parsamyan served in the U.S. Army from 1998 to 2002 in an Infantry Platoon with the 10th Mountain Division, 2/4 Infantry Regime based in Fort Drum, New York. He currently serves as vice president of Vets 4 Veterans, as well as working with Coffee 4 Vets and Blue Star Moms.
“It is an honor to name John as our Veteran of the Year,” said Palmdale City Manager J.J. Murphy. “His desire to serve veterans and his way of giving back to the community is honorable and admirable, and an example for others to follow. We are very fortunate to have someone of his character and compassion in our community. As they say in the Army, lead, follow, or get out of the way. John is a true servant leader.”
Parsamyan is also the owner of Armed Services Autobody in Palmdale, where he employs an exclusive veteran staff and provides hands-on job training to help veterans avoid homelessness and joblessness. Armed Services Autobody is involved in several community projects including a monthly food drive, food giveaway, veteran training program, car care classes, as well as hosting a community restoration project to raise funds for veterans facing hardships. A portion of the profits from Armed Services Autobody is donated to local veteran support organizations.
“I am honored and humbled to receive this award, not only for what it stands for, but also for the previous recipient, Tom Hilzendeger,” Parsamyan said. “Since I first set foot in the Antelope Valley, my mission has always been simple: to provide veterans with a judgement free zone where they could learn hands on skills and use our facilities as a stepping stone to move up to bigger and better things.”
The Palmdale Veteran of the Year Awards in the future will be named in honor of Tom Hilzendeger, who passed away on June 7, 2020. Hilzendeger was the founder of Vets 4 Veterans and the first recipient of the award.
[Information via news release from the city of Palmdale.]