Our Inspirations


Garo Yepremian, Cofounder

GARO YEPREMIAN (1944-2015)
Garo was diagnosed with high grade neuroendocrine cancer and related brain tumors in May 2014. Unfortunately, Garo passed away one year later, in May 2015. Garo faced his illness the same way he faced every challenge in his life­—with extraordinary strength, courage, and determination.

Garo Yepremian was born on the island of Cyprus. He played in the first NFL game he ever saw– as a placekicker for the Detroit Lions, vs. the Baltimore Colts in 1966. Against all odds, Garo went on to become the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s choice as “Kicker of the Decade” from 1970-1980.

Garo’s NFL career spanned fifteen years, as he played for the Detroit Lions, Miami Dolphins, New Orleans Saints and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. From 1966 through 1981 he missed only one season (1969) when he proudly volunteered to serve in the U.S. Army.

Garo was a 2-time All-Pro, 2-time Super Bowl Champion, and was the leading scorer on the only undefeated team in NFL history (17-0), the 1972 “Perfect Season” Miami Dolphins. He was recently named one of the “50 Greatest” all time Miami Dolphins.

Garo was a National Spokesperson for Laser Spine Institute, The Leader In Endoscopic Spine Surgery, and was also a renowned motivational speaker.

Please visit garokicker.com to visit Garo’s official website.


Debby-Lu Yepremian, 1978–2004

Debby-Lu Yepremian

In 1998, Garo Yepremian’s youngest son, Azad, learned that his 19 year old girlfriend, Debby-Lu was diagnosed with an intrinsic brainstem glioma (inoperable brain tumor). He decided to marry her and help her in the fight for her life.

As Debby’s condition worsened, Azad put his career on hold and devoted 100% of his time to caring for her. With Azad’s steadfast support, she was able to outlive her initial prognosis of six months to live, and went on to live for six years. Sadly, Debby lost her battle at the age of 26.


Debby-Lu and Azad Yepremian

Debby-Lu Yepremian was the daughter of Harry Tashjian, III and his wife Debora. She had graduated from Unionville High School in 1995, and summa cum laude from West Chester University in 1999 as a psychology major with a French minor. She had won the Most Outstanding Psychology Student award at West Chester, one that is now named for her. Debby-Lu was involved with the arts and music, and had played the piccolo.

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