Jul 24, 2022 - World

U.S. ID's 2 American volunteer soldiers killed in Ukraine

A Ukrainian serviceman passes by destroyed buildings
A Ukrainian serviceman passes by destroyed buildings in the Ukrainian town of Siversk, Donetsk region, on July 22. Photo: Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. identified two American volunteer soldiers killed recently in Ukraine's eastern Donetsk region as Luke Lucyszyn and Bryan Young, CBS News reports.

The big picture: Lucyszyn and Young were part of a special operations force in the Ukrainian army that was stationed near Siversk, a town that has been the target for Russian forces, their Ukrainian commander, Ruslan Miroshnichenko, told Politico.

  • On July 18, the unit was sent to a nearby village clear a ravine where Russian troops were attempting to cross a river. But once they had successfully done so, the unit was ambushed by Russian tanks, according to Miroshnichenko.
  • A Canadian citizen, Emile-Antoine Roy-Sirois, and a Swedish citizen, Edvard Selander Patrignani, were also killed in the ambush.
  • “The first shell injured Luke. Three guys, Edward, Emile and Bryan, they immediately attempted to help Luke, to do first aid, and evacuate him from this spot. Then the second shell killed them all," Miroshnichenko told Politico.

Driving the news: A State Department spokesperson confirmed the deaths of two U.S. citizens in the Donbas in a statement to Axios on Sunday but did not identify them. They added that they are in touch with the respective families and providing consular assistance.

  • Lucyszyn's parents and Young's wife confirmed the deaths of their loved ones to CBS News after being notified by the State Department.

What they're saying: "He didn't go there to be a hero. He went there because he wanted to help people," said Kathryn Lucyszyn, Luke's mother, in an interview with NBC News. She added that Luke's father, George, is Ukrainian.

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