Jumped into a mined trench to escape the shelling. Military stories about injuries and rehabilitation

Jumped into a mined trench to escape the shelling.  Military stories about injuries and rehabilitation


A fragment tore out the elbow Dmitry, the door in the car was blocked, but the soldier miraculously got out. He did not lose consciousness, and this saved his life.

Eugene I also couldn’t stop myself when I blew myself up on a mine. An enemy shell tore off both of his legs, and the occupiers shelled positions to make evacuation difficult.

Mykola received several fragments in the leg, one of them stopped in the groin. The limb had to be amputated, but the doctors decided to save it despite complications, infection and decay.

These men miraculously survived and are already undergoing rehabilitation in Recovery centers. Each of them plans to return to the front.

“UP.Zhyttia” spoke with Dmytro, Mykola and Yevhen about their service, injuries and success in recovery.

Next is their direct speech.

“The shrapnel tore out the elbow joint”

Dmytro, Vinnytsia

I wanted to serve in the army since childhood. My uncle worked in the police force at that time, and that inspired me a lot.

In 2007, I was drafted into a military unit in Odesa. At that time, these were internal troops – we patrolled the city, maintained public order, etc. After a year of service, I was transferred to a special unit called “Jaguar”.

In 2014, we freed the city administration in Kharkiv, which was captured by “aunties”. For this, the management awarded us extraordinary ranks – I received a senior ensign.

Dmytro is undergoing rehabilitation

photo from the archive

Later in 2014, we went to Izyum on a mission, where the first 200th was – our grenade launcher died there. I was in the anti-terrorist operation, OOS – repulsed Slovyansk with the boys, stood near Avdiyivka, etc.

During my 17 years of service, I have changed many positions. I started as a machine gunner, then a unit commander, and in 2021 I was appointed to the position of a platoon commander. I wanted to be an officer, so I went to study.

A full-scale invasion caught me in the village of Ocheretino in Donetsk region. From the 23rd to the 24th, I was on duty. At 3 o’clock in the morning, the first Russian planes and bombers flew in, tanks moved in.

About a week later, we were transferred to Volnovakha, but we didn’t last long there. There was a strong attack. When the company man was wounded, I began to drag him away. A shell flew nearby, and I was also wounded in the leg. Subsequently, he was treated in Zolochiv in the Lviv region and returned to the army.

Then there was Spirne, Robotine, Belogorivka. In the last one, I received my second injury – we were fired upon by a drone. I started to run into the dugout, but the helmet came off and a fragment flew into my head. I quickly recovered and returned to the boys again.

I received the third and most serious wound near Malaya Tokmachka. We were supposed to storm the landing, the enemy fired at it. I was driving a car with the group. The Russians chose her as a target. The sapper died, the driver ran away, I was wounded, but remained conscious. The door was blocked, the hand that had been raised was limping. I miraculously got out of the car before the second landing. If I had fainted, I would not have gotten out of there alive.

A shrapnel tore out my elbow joint. Fortunately, the hand was saved and an endoprosthesis was placed. Now I am undergoing rehabilitation – restoring the work of the hand. Before it didn’t work at all, but now I can move my fingers and bend my arm a little.

Unfortunately, the traumatologist said that I was not fit. I was offered to go to the National Guard as a teacher, but I refused so far, I still hope to return to the boys.

Dmytro plans to return to the front

Dmytro plans to return to the front

photo from the archive

In the meantime, I have the opportunity to see my family, because I am being treated in Vinnytsia, where my wife and 5-year-old daughter live. She is already 5.5 years old, of which I hardly saw her for almost two years of full-scale invasion. Now I’m making up for it.

“Not a leg, but a piece of rotten meat”

Mykola, Chernihiv region

I have dreamed of military service since childhood. Although my dad’s brother served in Afghanistan, and together with my father, they were categorically against my joining the army.

When the full-scale invasion began and the Russians surrounded Chernihiv, Nizhyn, and Konotop, I was 18 years old. I studied by correspondence.

The occupiers were marching right through my native village, which stands near the Moscow highway. I realized that I cannot sit and watch – I have to act, to defend my native home. He told his parents about his service in the infantry only two months later. They were not very happy, but they accepted my decision.

After the liberation of Chernihiv Oblast, the mechanized brigade where I serve was sent to Donetsk Oblast. Later, I received my first injury in Bilogorivka.

Mykola is recovering from his injury

Mykola is recovering from his injury

photo from the archive

It was light – the body was cut with small fragments, and the gases caused burns to the eyes. I quickly got back in line.

Then we were transferred to the Bakhmut district, where we stayed for more than half a year. Somehow the enemy’s artillery hit our positions. The 120th mine flew through the dugout. I was so scared for the first time in my life – I was walking, and my legs were shaking.

Within a few hours, I was wounded and lay in position for 4 hours with tourniquets. One tourniquet was placed above the first wound, and the second one was placed as high as possible – under the groin. At dawn, evacuation was impossible – the enemy immediately covered with artillery.

Due to the fact that I waited a long time for evacuation, I developed tourniquet syndrome – the tissues of my legs began to die.

The injury is serious – a fracture of both tibia bones, a “stitched” thigh. And another shrapnel that entered from the side of the buttock and stopped in the groin.

In such cases, the limb is cut off, because it is not a leg, but a piece of rotten meat. But the doctors managed to save her. It was difficult, because my body was fighting the infection, both of my kidneys were failing. But some medicines were ordered in Germany, blood was transfused, and eventually the body started up.

How is Mykola's rehabilitation going

How is Mykola’s rehabilitation going

photo from the archive

My treatment and rehabilitation have been going on for more than six months, there is progress – I can already walk independently without crutches. A nerve and muscle plastic surgery is ahead to finally restore the function of the limb.

During his service, he received the rank of junior sergeant and became the commander of the department for merit. Now I am getting treatment and plan to continue my service. Maybe not in the infantry anymore, but there is a lot of work at the front that I can do. We will fight until we recapture our territory, because we are fighting for our home.

“I was blown up by a mine. Both my legs were torn off”

Evgeny, Kyiv

For me, the service began with the Revolution of Dignity in 2013. After the dispersal and beating of students, I decided to take an active part in the change of power.

When the events on the Maidan ended, but the Russians attacked, he didn’t stay away either. In April 2014, he enrolled in welfare. My first battle was near Izyum, and then we were sent to Mount Karachun in Donetsk region. There we were almost surrounded, because the occupiers captured Sloviansk and Kramatorsk, and the mountain was just between these cities. I was a versatile soldier, because it was a line of defense where I had to perform various tasks and there were not enough people.

I served until the so-called “truce” in 2016. I did not like those agreements and freezing of the conflict. So I decided to end my service and return to civilian life.

For 6 years, I built a house for myself near Brovary in the Kyiv region, planned to start a family, wanted a comfortable life.

Yevgeny's rehabilitation

Yevgeny’s rehabilitation

photo from the archive

But on February 24, 2022, he woke up to the sounds of explosions. Since I was demobilized, but an active military man, I had to urgently report to the unit. But I decided otherwise and joined the SSO (Special operations forces – ed.).

The enemy was advancing from many directions, and at times it was not clear whose territory you were on. It happened that we met a column of equipment, but the enemy soldiers did not have time to understand that Ukrainian fighters were in front of them. We miraculously managed to escape.

I served 1 year and 7 months from the start of the invasion without injury. In the Zaporozhye direction near Robotiny in the summer of 2023, my boys and I were ordered to occupy enemy positions. We were already returning when the Russians started shelling. There were 20 meters to the dugout in the open area. Nearby were the trenches of the Russians, which they left mined after them. I decided to take a chance and jump to save my life, but I hit a mine. Both my legs were torn off.

The comrades immediately came running, dragged them into the dugout, put on the turnstiles and began the evacuation. This stage was difficult and long, because it was necessary to walk for a long time, the boys were exhausted, and the passages in the dugouts were narrow. Therefore, instead of four people, I was carried by two. I was taken away from the evacuation point by infantrymen on a motorcycle. There was no point in sending another vehicle to the target position – the enemy was waiting for us.

Despite the great loss of blood, I remained conscious the entire way of evacuation. I understood that I would have an amputation, but I did not know that it was so high.

Currently, I am actively undergoing rehabilitation – I play sports and motivate other wounded people by my own example. I’m already starting to invent tricks, walking on my hands, standing on my head.

I recently went to the pool and realized that I can’t swim without legs, but the instructor advised me to change the technique and gradually it started to come out.

Evgeny is actively involved in sports

photo from the archive

Eugene is optimistic about his future moves

photo from the archive

Amputation did not prevent Yevgeny from improving his physical condition

photo from the archive

Eugene invents tricks

photo from the archive

A military man does a handstand

photo from the archive

I’m sad that I won’t be able to lead a very active life like I used to. But now I’m clinging to all activities to understand what I can do and what I can’t.

This war will not end quickly, and our enemy is quite strong. I will most likely be unfit for military service. But I have experience in FPV and in principle I can still be useful in some way. Thank God, there are hands.

Victoria Andreeva, UP. Life





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