Soldier whose arm was axed off while in captivity needs prosthesis

By Oleh Luchechko
Translated by Voices of Ukraine

In the photo is Vasyl Pelysh, from Aidar Battalion. Vasyl, is my brother. His arm was chopped off while in captivity with an axe. On his hand was a tattoo with the inscription “Glory to Ukraine.” Vasyl’s mother is raising money for a prosthesis, which is very expensive, and they cannot afford to pay for it. Ukrainians, every hryvnia, dollar or euro that you give or have given carries great weight!

Those who wish to donate to Vasyl’s prosthesis I give you his card number: 5168755391013576, and his mother’s phone: 0972123343 Tanya.

Vasyl recently returned from the east, where he took some “humanitarian aid” for his fellow brothers … additionally, he had to go there to provide a document from headquarters that he really was in the war, and that he lost an arm also in the war, and that all the injuries he received were also in the war – it’s just like that … and his mother’s soul is being shredded from such abuse.

Vasyl’s story I have copied, here: 

“19 year old Vasyl Pelysh, from Staryi Sambir, Lviv region, spent a month in terrorist captivity. Insurgents axed off his right arm because of a “Glory to Ukraine” tattoo.

Pelysh was liberated from captivity last Saturday. Now he is being treated in a military hospital in Lviv. We agree to meet on Wednesday afternoon. For Vasyl, examinations and procedures are ending.

  • Doctors are looking to see how they can save my leg. In the left knee a fragment lodged, hit a nerve – says Vasyl Pelysh. Since June, he has served in the Aidar Battalion. He fought in the Luhansk region. – He is left without an arm, but he’s alive. Too bad, it was a nice tattoo, the emblem and “Glory to Ukraine.” He had it made a month before he lost his arm. He was captured by the terrorists on August 26. Near Novosvitlivka they wounded one of the soldiers. Vasyl was driving him to the hospital.
  • A second soldier’s belly was half blown away. They tried to call for an ambulance for a long time. But in vain. Finally they loaded him into a UAZ. They wanted to drive him to Khryaschuvate to the hospital. He was hurrying and he didn’t take with him neither body armor nor grenades in case he got captured as a prisoner – said Pelysh.
  • On the road the car was hit by a tank. “I remember my eyes went dark and I had the feeling I was tumbling in the air. When I recovered, I was lying on the ground – on top of me, my friend’s corpse. All around me was on fire. I felt the fire coming up to my left leg, so I crawled. I sat down, lit a cigarette. I hoped that nearby were ‘ours.’ I stumbled toward the nearest position. I met a couple of men with guns. I started telling them: ‘I’m yours … with Aidar.’ They said: ‘How are you ours … you’re your own.’ Then I realized that I had fallen to the terrorists. I asked if they would shoot me. They waved their heads – no. As in, I’d fall into captivity. I started to shout, better to be shot. I received an example to my back. Because of the severe blow I fainted. I woke up when they were beating me with the kicks and examples of another dozen terrorists. They stripped me. One of the fighters noticed the tattoo on my right arm. This made him very angry. He began to swear and then went somewhere. He returned with an axe. He pulled my arm, stood on it with his foot and chopped it almost to the shoulder. Next they loaded me into a vehicle and drove to another one of their positions. There their medic bandaged my arm in a bandage. I was dripping with blood. Then I was taken to a hospital. I remember only a tall building and many women in white coats. Again, I went unconscious.”

They held Vasyl Pelysh in a Luhansk hospital.

  • The insurgents continued to mock him. The moral and mental strife went like this: “We will kill you now. What should we shoot first?” “Well, and threats that I will not get out alive. But that scared me the least. If there had been a grenade, I would have blown myself up with those who captured me. The guards who stood at the chamber constantly repeated – it’s lucky that you did not fall to the Chechens. They could have chopped you into pieces alive. In this hospital with me was a guy from the 80th Brigade
  •  Sasha Yukhnenko. He was wounded by a grenade. Still in the hospital, we were not allowed out of the room. They fed us, so that we wouldn’t die. In the morning they gave us soup. In the evening – two tablespoons of barley. The insurgents hate Aidar [Battalion] members. If they detain someone [from Aidar], then they are practically never released alive. And if you are a resident of the city of Lviv, then all the more so. They are convinced that we are taught from the cradle to hate Russians. It impressed them most that I spoke Russian with them.”

Talks for his release from captivity were led by the NGO “Social Movement of Ukraine” and leaders of the group “Milestone” from the Aidar Battalion. Originally they wanted to exchange Vasyl for 14 militants.

News video with Vasyl’s father, grandmother and mother (in Ukrainian):

Source: Oleh Luchechko FB


BBC News, Ukraine conflict: Wounded soldiers face new battle

If anyone in the West can donate an arm prosthesis, please contact (below) Thank you!

Prosthesis help for Ukrainian wounded through (in several languages)

Prosthesis help for Ukrainian wounded through Give [Ukraine] a Hand

This entry was posted in English, English News, Help for ukrainian wounded, Pictures, South&Eastern Ukraine, War in Donbas and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Soldier whose arm was axed off while in captivity needs prosthesis

  1. Pingback: You asked how to help: Adopt A Soldier | Voices of Ukraine

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  3. Pingback: Adopt A Soldier initiative adopts more veterans for April | Voices of Ukraine

  4. Pingback: Ukraine War Amps expands programs to include “I CARE About Fallen Hero’s Family” #FreeSavchenko | Voices of Ukraine

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