Mar 18, 2022 - World

U.S. citizen killed in Russian attack on Chernihiv

An ambulance stands ready by a damaged residential building after a Russian attack in Chernihiv, Ukraine on March 17.
An ambulance stands by a damaged residential building after a Russian attack in Chernihiv, Ukraine, on Thursday. Photo: State Emergency Service of Ukraine/Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

An American citizen killed in a Russian attack on the northern Ukrainian city of Chernihiv was identified by his family and Ukrainian officials on Thursday as James Whitney Hill.

Driving the news: The 67-year-old Minnesota native, known as Jimmy or Jim, "was waiting in a bread line with several other people when they were gunned down by Russian military snipers" on Wednesday, wrote his sister Cheryl Hill Gordon on Facebook. "His body was found in the street by the local police," she added.

  • The U.S. Embassy in Ukraine tweeted after the attack, "Russian forces shot and killed 10 people standing in line for bread in Chernihiv."
  • U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken confirmed that a U.S. citizen had been killed in the attack, which Russia's military denied carrying out. He did not name Hill, but an adviser to Ukraine’s interior minister confirmed his details to CNN.

The big picture: Hill had traveled to Chernihiv from Driggs, Idaho, with his Ukrainian partner, Ira, months ago for her to receive medical treatment and later became trapped in the city, according to his Facebook page.

  • His sister Katya Hill told CNN on Wednesday, "He was not going to leave Ira's side in her condition."
  • Jim Hill described the situation in one Facebook post following the Russian invasion: "Nobody in Chernihiv is safe. Indiscriminate bombing. ... Ukrainian forces hold city but are surrounded. It's a siege here. Nobody in. Nobody out."
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