LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Each year on April 24, thousands of Armenian Americans march the streets of Hollywood for the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.
This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 105th anniversary moves online with a humanitarian fundraiser to support Feeding America.
"Initially, we called 1.5 million meals in memory of 1.5 million souls," said Mihran Toumajan of the Armenian Assembly of America.
Armenian Americans remember the loss of up to 1.5 million Armenians beginning in 1915 in a campaign blamed on the Ottoman Turkish government.
Turkey has long denied the killings were deliberate.
Last year, the U.S. Senate passed a resolution formally recognizing the Armenian genocide.
"My grandfather was saved by the Near East Relief Foundation, which was an American charitable organization that saved over 300,000 orphans from the Ottoman Empire," said Krikor Moloyan of the Armenian Council of America.
"The outpouring of support from Americans from throughout the country was just incredible at the time," said Toumajan.
In light of the current crisis, with so many Americans struggling, organizers say helping Feeding America seemed fitting.
"We've surpassed three million meals, and we just want to say a big thank you," Moloyan said.
A candlelight vigil at 7:15 p.m. Friday will be virtual.
Organizers are asking people who wish to take a photo and post to social media to remember those lost.
Armenian Genocide commemorated with online humanitarian effort, donation of over 3M meals
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 105th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide moves online with a humanitarian fundraiser to support Feeding America.
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