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Stories that you confided to us

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Liubov Shpak

"The house was bombed, and we are told, "Do not enter the ATO area"

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On 5 September 2014, my son and I hid in the basement. We heard some rumours about what was going to happen. We hid in the basement and spent the night there. And somewhere after four o'clock in the morning we heard this terrible rumbling sound! We fell down and covered our ears. Then we heard how something exploded right above our heads.

It turned out to be a shell – a big rocket hit the house right above. Everything around was burning. Luckily, we brought our passports. We called the Fire Station, but we couldn't get through. We called for an hour and a half. I build the house myself even though I didn't have a big salary. The house had seven rooms. We had everything we needed. It burned to the ground.

I worked as a teacher of Ukrainian Literature at our rural school. Before that, I worked in Melekyne. Then I moved here. My parents were old, and my parents' house was nearby. What was I supposed to do? Nothing. Everything burned to the ground, even dishes and spoons. The only thing we have left is our passports and Vasia's diploma. That is it.

It happened in 2014. Then, in 2015 -2016, we were told that we were not in the ATO area. Four kilometres from the ATO area. This rocket destroyed our lives! It destroyed everything.

Thank you for at least giving me a room. But I had to beg for that. We have been living here, in one bed, since 2015. People gave us some basic things: a mattress, a pillow, etc.

We were so scared. We went to Kyiv. I have a cousin there. But they didn't accept us there – we didn't have a certificate that our house burned. At first, there was still some hope, that we would get jobs in Kyiv and find a place to live. But we didn't, because we didn't have a certificate confirming that we were internal refugees. We are nobody. Heorhiivka They just raise heads, saying, "Your Heorhiivka is not part of the ATO area." Four kilometres from Mariinka, which is part of the ATO area. We have nothing left.

If only it would end — this war. I only pray to God and ask this war will finish. How long can we stand it?

When quoting a story, a reference to the source – the Museum of Civilian Voices of the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation – is mandatory, as follows:

The Museum of Civilian Voices of the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation https://civilvoicesmuseum.org/

Rinat Akhmetov Foundation Civilian Voices Museum
Heorhiivka 2014 2015 Video Civilian's stories pensioners 2014 2015 2016 destroyed or damaged housing shelling safety and life support housing elderly (60+) poor
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