My name is Vahan Dickran Khoyan and I am Armenian. I was born in Miami, Florida on January 10, 1944. I have been married for 35 years to my lovely wife, Linda. We have three sons and three grandchildren.
I was a pilot for 44 years and the second youngest pilot with Eastern Airlines. I owned my own jet charter company. We flew Rock Groups, Actors, Politicians, and Sports Celebrities world wide. Later in my career, I became an Inspector and Mediator for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
My profession was flying, which I loved, but my passion was sailing. I owned a 45’ Ketch (sail boat) named “Kestrel”.
While shopping at Home Depot, ten years ago, I had an ischemic (clot) stroke. I was 59. I recovered from the stroke but was diagnosed with aphasia. It was very hard for me to talk after my stroke. For two years I couldn’t speak, except for ‘bye, bye baby’ and ‘more beer’. Then I decided there was no looking back. I have always lived by the philosophy, ‘the past is the past, so look to the future.’
I started going to Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in West Orange, NJ, where I worked with my speech-language pathologist. She introduced me and my best friend, Fanasie, to Lingraphica CEO Andrew Gomory, who invited us to the Lingraphica offices in Princeton where we started the Lingraphica Users Group. I was using the AllTalk and I found there were things that could be improved to make it easier to use for people like me, with aphasia so I started meeting with Lingraphica to help make improvements.
Now I go to stroke support groups around New Jersey and I enjoy sharing my aphasia journey with others.