The medical director at the largest facility in Ukraine dedicated to treating soldiers who have lost limbs estimates the number of soldiers who have lost arms, hands or legs in battle is about 17,000, but the real total is likely far higher.
On assignment for The Globe&Mail
The Halychyna Rehabilitation Center outside Lviv is the largest rehab facility in Ukraine for soldiers who have lost limbs. Lyubin Velykyy Ukraine
From left: Viktor Deineka, 49, a major in the Ukrainian army, has been a soldier for 30 years. He lost his legs on Feb. 24, the first day of the Russian invasion, when a cluster bomb hit his unit, wounding 17 soldiers in total. He has been learning to walk with canes and has yet to tell his mother that he was injured. He won’t tell her until he walk without any assistance.
Dr. Volodymyr Hlovatskyi, 30, oversees the center which provides care for 160 amputees. Dr. Hlovatskyi says most patients stay for around three months, and the waiting list is long. He also lacks enough equipment and other supplies. Since the war began on 24 February 2022, Dr. Hlovatskyi has started smoking cigarettes out of stress.
Olek Fedoriv, 39, lost both legs during a battle in the Donbas regions of Ukraine three months ago. He joined the military in March, shortly after Russia launched its invasion. Before the war he was a maintenance worker. His wife is Tetiana Fedoriv who found out he was injured via social media. She has been living at the rehab center while he rehabilitates.
Oleksandr Mazur, 21, and his wife Angelina, 18, met shortly after the war started. On July 17, he stepped on a mine a lost his left leg. They got married Aug. 20 and Mr. Mazur still hopes to return to his unit.They have a rat named Teodor.
Vadym Medvid, left, and Dr. Volodymyr Hlovatskyi plays chess with Dr. Volodymyr Hlovatskyi in the room where psychological therapy takes place at The Halychyna Rehabilitation Center, in Velykyi Liubin, Ukraine.