Paul Berberian grew up in Los Angeles, California. His father was an immigrant to the United States, originally from Beirut, Lebanon. He spoke English as his six language and he was the typical American rags-to-riches story; hard-working, running a bunch of little businesses. Paul grew up working for all of his dad's little companies.
They made liniments for professional race horses, sold used pinball machines, had a diner, made hand lotion for emergency medical kits and even made the stuff that numbs your gum before a dentist gives you the novocaine.
They were not great at running those businesses, but they would buy them along with the whole building, and use the business's cash flow to pay for the mortgage, eventually owning a bunch of buildings in Southern California.