PICTURES: A Heartbreaking Tale of Sacrifice and Love Amidst War

In a poignant series of photographs, renowned Ukrainian war photographers Kostiantyn and Vlada Liberov (@libkos – Instagram) have unveiled a powerful story that sheds light on the tremendous sacrifices of Ukrainians to defend their nation’s freedom and sovereignty. The photographers describe the journey of Andriy, who voluntarily enlisted to defend his homeland and paid a heavy personal price in the process.

Before the full-scale invasion, Andriy sang in a choir and was passionate about traveling and his beloved wife, Alina. When the war started, it took him months to persuade the military enlistment office to get him to the front. Eventually, he ended up in the 47th Brigade, where he headed the aerial reconnaissance unit.

While carrying out a combat mission, Andriy found himself engulfed in a hailstorm of enemy fire. A shell exploded in close proximity, shattering his world in an instant. Doctors who evacuated him were sure that he wouldn’t survive. Meanwhile, Andriy stayed conscious until the surgery and was even capable of giving orders.

Andriy lost both hands, his eyes and a portion of his hearing. The injuries left his face disfigured, but surgeons put it back together.

Alina, Andriy’s wife, is constantly by his side, attending to his every need within the confines of the hospital. Alina assists Andriy with his meals, accompanies him during physiotherapy sessions, and tenderly lies next to him after each exhausting procedure.

Andriy constantly reflects upon his actions, examining every decision made during his service. He ponders whether leaving his post earlier or remaining longer could have altered the course of events. Yet, amidst this introspection, he never entertains the notion that he could have avoided the war altogether.

While Andriy’s condition has stabilized, both he and Alina face a challenging road to recovery. Their journey includes extensive rehabilitation, and they are actively exploring the possibilities of Bionic Vision technology – a beacon of hope on their path to rebuilding their lives. However, these endeavors require substantial financial resources, placing an additional burden on the couple.