Rochester woman’s family member stuck in Kyiv, Ukraine

Published: Mar. 3, 2022 at 3:49 PM CST
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – It’s been eight days since Russian troops invaded Ukraine.

More than a million people have fled the country.

The United Nations Refugee Agency says a tide of people are fleeing by car, train, and on even foot making it the swiftest exodus of refugees this century.

Rochester resident, Rozalina McCoy, said her sister-in-law has had to seek shelter in a basement in Kyiv, Ukraine.

“Since yesterday they started to have explosions inside of the city. Before they were more on the outskirts of Kyiv and now they’re really starting to get in town” said, McCoy. “And food is running out so there’s really nothing. Not much left in supermarkets anymore. Hospitals don’t take people unless they absolutely have to. They’re reserving that for casualties or births, things like that.”

McCoy said her sister in law, traveled to Ukraine to visit her mother who is battling colon cancer.

For security reasons, she asked that her sister-in-law be unidentified but she is trying to help her relocate to a safer area.

“We were hoping she would have gotten on a bus this morning. She had a ticket, but that fell through. Probably because the train station was bombed yesterday,” said McCoy.

However, if her sister-in-law leaves, it will be hard for her mother to do the same.

“Her mom can’t make it and doesn’t want to try. So my sister-in-law is in a situation where her mom will die if she stays, and will probably die if she goes. And then she has two kids and a husband at home,” McCoy said.

She said it’s important for people to stand in solidarity with Ukraine and support organizations that are leading efforts to help Ukrainians.

“This war and crisis is only going to get worse and we really need to show our support in the long haul,” McCoy said.

The United Nations estimates 12 million people in Ukraine and 4 million refugees could be in need of relief and protection in the coming months.

Here’s a list of organizations people can donate to:

RELATED STORY: Rochester community hosts rally to support Ukraine

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