YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN)- On Wednesday, 22 people died in an Independence Day attack in Ukraine.
The day marked when Ukraine originally gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.
The day also marked six months since Russia invaded the country. Michael Walkowiec is a board member with Saints Peter and Paul Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Youngstown. He said he still has family in Ukraine.
Michael said while his family is safe, not everyone is so lucky.
Michael said that everyone he’s spoke to back in Ukraine wants the conflict to end, and they’re grateful for the aid from the United States.
“They are as of now in a safe zone because they’re closer to Poland. However, not everybody’s in that situation. It’s affecting the people of Ukraine greatly, They’re still in fear every single day,” Michael said.
To celebrate Ukraine’s original liberation from Russia, the church is holding a flag ceremony this weekend. The pastor of the church tells me it’s a way to celebrate and show support for the Ukrainian people during these difficult times. Board member Michael Walkoweic said that more than anything it’s a plea for independence.
“All they want to do is be liberated and that’s what the unfolding of the flag is, it’s just to show that we want to be free and independent from Soviet rule,” Michael said.
The ceremony starts at 11:15 a.m. on Sunday on the church’s steps. Everyone is welcome to attend.