WHEELING W.Va. (WTRF)- It is on our phones and it is on our tv.

We see firsthand accounts of what is happening in Ukraine but we, but we’ll never fully understand how the people of Ukraine are suffering. 


We sat down with one Wheeling women’s Ukrainian parents who traveled to the Friendly City for safety.   

The war on Ukraine is causing many families to flee their homes.   

This couple was fortunate enough to escape the danger, however, the trip to America was long exhausting and uncertain.   

Now that they are safe, their daughter helps us tell their story. 

Anaya Robertson moved to America about 17 years ago, but her parents and family still live in Ukraine. 

Anaya’s father, Volodymyr Uryvskyi was born in Russia and moved to Ukraine when he was 39 years old. 

Anaya says she can’t say all of Russia is attacking Ukraine, because she says she knows many Russian people do not support the war.  

Given the danger, after many conversations, her parents realized they must make the difficult decision to leave.  

They we’re planning to move and rent an apartment closer to my sister by Kiev, which they paid money for that and everything and then everybody trying to move from Kiev now, who could.

We have some friends that live in Kyiv right now and they are so scared. They as they say, you know, we sleep under the beds basically. So, they’re really, really scared.

Anaya Robertson , Daughter

The couple took a taxi, a bus, and stayed in several places before flying to Washington D.C., then Pittsburgh. Finally, after the grueling 16-hour journey they arrived in Wheeling.  

Svitlana Mishchikhina says she felt they would never make it. 

Anaya says the reunion was emotional.  

Her father once fought with the Ukrainian military and even thousands of miles away still believe in his country.  

We will overcome race and hatred. People of different countries and regions live freely in America. Many years ago, you defended your independence and became an example for us. Please help us to do the same.

Volodymyr Uryvskyi, Ukrainian citizen

He says one day their enemies will disappear but for now their soldiers must fight.  

Ukraine will win. Glory to Ukraine and Glory to its heroes.

Svitlana Mishchikhina, Ukrainian citizen

This couple has obviously been through an ordeal no one should have to endure and they were kind enough to share it all with us.