Ukrainians affected by profound personal loss reach out to Western companies that refuse to cut business ties with the aggressor state and continue to pay taxes to the Kremlin, thus helping fund Russia’s unprovoked war of aggression. Together with partners, B4Ukraine collected numerous stories of personal loss from ordinary Ukrainians and their plea to Western multinationals to exit Russia as soon as possible.
Hi! I’m 15-year-old Ivan from Kyiv Region. I died in early March when my mom Iryna tried to get me and my younger sister Dasha out of the occupied village while my dad had already been fighting at war. Those moments when we were going fast in our car, enemy bullets were piercing the interior and Dasha was curled up on the floor - became the last moments of my life.
When we left our car to keep moving on foot we saw that one of the bullets hit me close to my heart. I felt like my left hand was torn off because I couldn’t control it. I tried to keep up with my family, I tried to keep going but I collapsed again and again. I remained laying in the field one kilometer away from our summer house…
I was my parents’ only and desired son. They gave me all of their love and inspiration. In a few years, my little sister Dasha was born and I also helped raise her. I always tried to give my baby sister everything. My parents often left her on me when they had to go run errands.
Mom remembers me as a selfless child. I could’ve given everything I had to my friends. I was good at phones and computers and liked to play video games for hours. I had hands of gold, as my mom used to say. When I was 10 I made paper guns: rifles, machine guns, and pistols.
I wasn’t very interested in studying, I hadn’t even decided what to do after I grew up. It turned out the enemies stole this opportunity from me when they gunned down the car I was in with my mom and sister. It’s just in that moment I understood that as the only man in the car I had to defend my family and that’s why I didn’t hide, I sat straight in the back.
After the shooting, my body laid in the field for several days until mom was able to retrieve it. At first, she buried me in the backyard of our summerhouse where I had grown up - she dug out a grave with the help of our neighbors and they made a coffin themselves, and when the enemy was kicked out of Kyiv Region - I was reburied in the cemetery in Bucha.
I am survived by my mom, dad, and little sister. They often think of what could have been if I like Dasha had curled down on the floor beneath the enemy bullets. Could I have been saved? And then on January 23, we would have celebrated my 16th birthday…