Sarkis "SA" Abkar
Born: January 3, 1948
Died: February 1, 2011

Sarkis "Sako" Abkar was a natural leader whose winning presence allowed him to take control of various situations with ease. Equipped with a clear and calculating focus, he possessed a tough-minded, “take charge” attitude. He had the ability to make even routine situations seem exciting, and he was at ease with the role of playing problem solver. Sako always sought out the scene of where the action was. Sociable, analytical and pleasant, Sako was an individual who enjoyed life’s challenges.

Sako was born on January 3, 1948 in Isfahan, Iran. His parents were Emil and Sonik Abkar. Always able to express himself well, Sako possessed strong interpersonal skills. He was optimistic in his outlook on life and was able at all times to be open and direct in his communication. Armed with a great wit, Sako was raised to be accepting of others and to implement a strong personal work ethic.

Blessed with a balanced attitude, Sako was able to relate well with others. His occasional role as family mediator gave him the opportunity to ease tense situations when they occurred. Sako was raised with one sibling, an older sister, Elise. Sako had a strong desire to be treated fairly and would readily offer others the same fairness in return.

As a young child, Sako showed his creative ability in many ways. He was outgoing and animated. Sako enjoyed new activities and pursued a variety of interests. He took part in soccer, bicycling, and billiards. In his spare time he liked to collect stamps.

Known to others as a focused, logical, open-minded and extremely driven individual, Sako was able to utilize these qualities to succeed in high school. His curious nature was spurred by his ability to maximize his personal learning style through employing a hands-on approach. He was good with facts and had an excellent memory. He graduated from Isfahan High School in 1965. He enjoyed some courses more than others, having favorite classes and teachers. His favorite classes in high school were math and algebra.

When the goal of college was in sight, it became important to Sako. Again, his direct, “down to earth” approach served him well. He was able to absorb complex concepts and had an acute sense of how things worked. He earned his Masters degree in accounting at the University of Tehran.

Friends and acquaintances found Sako an easy man to get to know, and those close to him would often praise his open, practical style of communication and his love for challenges and excitement. Sako was uncomplicated and straightforward in his relationships, which allowed him to accept people for what they were. Later in life, he became friends with Sako, Edik, Shahik, Norik, David and Mike.

In 1988 Sako exchanged wedding vows with Kelly in Las Vegas, Nevada (he was first married in 1971 in Iran). Sako was attentive to Kelly's feelings, and he charmed Kelly and others with his gift for being able to give freely and generously. A good listener with an engaging personality, Sako was able to bring pleasure and unexpected humor to the relationship.

Very much like a kid himself, Sako identified with the inquisitive and creative side of his children’s personalities. He was able to direct his energy and spontaneity towards helping his children acquire added common sense skills. Sako was blessed with three children- one son, Allen (deceased) and two daughters, Adria and Alina.

Sako was a flexible worker who was able to draw the best from others around him. A persuasive individual who was quick to make necessary decisions, Sako’s strengths included being able to think on his feet. He could be a leader who sought impact for his decisions. Gifted with an incredible ability to read body language, Sako was able to positively manipulate situations and motivate others in order to get a task completed. He was a superb negotiator who enjoyed new challenges. Sako could multi-task, and he was endowed with entrepreneurial spirit, allowing him to think beyond standard norms when it came to resolving issues in his work environment. His primary occupation was as an auto repair shop owner. He was employed for 20 years as a financial controller and 20 years as a business owner in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Sako enjoyed his leisure time by taking part in various hobbies. He had something of an artistic flair in many of the things that he did, and had excellent taste! He put this creativity toward all of his pastimes. His favorite pursuits were poker, car rallies, backgammon, and billiards. He was content to enjoy his hobbies alone but was also willing to share his interests with others.

Because he liked to take risks, Sako was a perfect match for poker and sports betting. He was enthusiastic and confident about these activities. In high school, Sako played soccer and took part in motorcycle riding and car racing. Recreational sports included poker and car rallies. Sako was also something of a sports fan and enjoyed watching his favorite events whenever he got the opportunity. Tops on his list were football and basketball.

Sako held close traditional values and as a result, faith was important to him. He was a member of the Armenian Church. He was a "good" Armenian in his heart.

Travel and vacations were experiences that Sako truly enjoyed (as long as it wasn't longer than two days!). Sako always had a funny remark to make about people and situations. He preferred to seek out excitement wherever he went and he was partial to vacations that were casual and laid back with an atmosphere of “live and let live.” He was willing to leave his plans open and flexible, just in case something more interesting came along. A favorite vacation was a Mediterranean cruise.

Sako was a lover of animals and cherished his pets. A few of his favorites were Benny, Rufus, and Bubbles, all Pekingese dogs. Benny was a best friend for 16 years.

Sako passed away on February 1, 2011 at Summerlin Hospital in Las Vegas, Nevada after fighting a short battle with pneumonia. He is survived by his beloved wife, Kelly; his daughters, Adria and Alina; his sister, Elise; and his brother-in-law, Larry. Services were held at Palm Mortuary, Eastern Chapel. Sako was laid to rest in Palm Eastern Cemetery in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Sako was the kind of person who could win others over easily. A concrete communicator, he relied on his senses to increase his involvement and awareness of others. He was always able to provide amusing repartee to his friends and acquaintances, offering a seemingly endless supply of quips, anecdotes, jokes and stories. If Sako had a theme song written about him, it might well have been “The Gambler.” He enjoyed his life and the experience of living it. Everyone who knew him, thought he had a lot of guts, and this is how Sarkis "Sako" Abkar will be remembered.