These millennials endured the fiercest days of the Revolution of Dignity
[February 20 in Ukraine commemorates the Heroes of the Heavenly Hundred]
Maxim Goshovsky, 33, clothing manufacturer
From the beginning of the Euromaidan, I came from Dnipro, where I lived, to the capital every week and was there for several days. And when serious clashes broke out, I stayed in Kyiv for a long time.
… I arrived on Hrushevskoho Street early in the morning on January 22 – my acquaintances called me for help to the medical center they guarded. I arrived when the bodies of Serhiy Nihoyan and Mykhailo Zhyznevsky were taken out of there. I helped bring them to the ambulance, which was going to the morgue “
Subsequently, the most brutal clashes with “berkut” began. I remember they watered us, so it was very slippery underfoot. I fell, and a “Berkut member” immediately ran up to me and started beating me on the legs with a stick. The men who were nearby ran up to us, one of them jumped on him and knocked him off his feet. So I managed to escape.
The first victim I brought to the medical center in the October Palace in February was Anatoliy Korneyev, head of the village of Ruda in the Kamyanets-Podilsky district. I see his wife and son every year when I come to visit his grave. Also the year before the previous one, I met the family of one of the last heroes I brought there, Volodymyr Chaplinsky. Both men are very important to me – I even saw them in my dreams many times.
I did not feel fear for my life on the Maidan. I was guided by instincts and the voice of the heart. I tried to cover up the medics, because I thought it would be better if the bullet flew into me – I was less useful, and they need to save lives. I was scared until February 21, when it was over and we started burying people. Only then did it occur to me that I could also lie in a coffin.
After those events, I tried for a long time to get rid of the post-traumatic disorder (later it was joined by the participation in the evacuation of the bodies of our soldiers from Ilovaisk).
There is a sense of unity in my memory from the Revolution of Dignity. Then on the Maidan everyone understood that it is impossible to retreat. The Maidan taught us to prove our position and fight to the end. Ukrainians have proved that they will not suffer.
Stanislav Kravchuk, 26 years old, therapist
When the Maidan started, I was 18. At that time I was a freshman at the Medical University, and after the couples I came to the rallies that took place on the European Square and was there until late in the evening. At first, I was just interested in watching the changes in the country. But after the first assault near the Ukrainian House, when I felt the effects of tear gas for the first time in my life, I realized that I wanted to be an active participant in change, not an observer. I wanted to help people, so I joined the volunteers as a doctor: I delivered medicine to people on Hrushevskoho Street, helped activists with burns of mucous membranes, took the wounded to mobile hospitals …
In the days of the fiercest confrontations, my friend and I were constantly near the House of Trade Unions. They were going to the October Palace – the epicenter of the events of that time. But we were stopped by a senior volunteer who said to help people on the spot. We rescued Ukrainians with gunshot wounds…
At that time, there was no sense of death hovering nearby. It was terrible when I left the Maidan. Only then I began to come to understand all the horror that took place in those days. Emotions ran high. The hardest thing was to watch the funeral of people… You know, the song “Plyve kacha”, from which the soul was torn, will always be heard in my memories.
Now I am convinced that the Revolution of Dignity has managed to change the course of history. The independence that Ukraine gained 30 years ago without bloodshed, we have really started to fight for the Revolution of Dignity and we continue to do so till nowadays.
Kateryna Tyaglo, 36 years old, sociologist
I have been on the Maidan almost every day since the end of November 2013. Later I started volunteering with friends from Kharkiv – we poured tea for people and made sandwiches. And on February 16-18, I was at St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Cathedral, where I sorted medicines and bandages, which people brought in huge packages, and also prepared food in an improvised kitchen.
While I was on the Maidan, I had no fear for my own life, only unrealistic physical fatigue. In addition, I was worried that my parents would see me somewhere in the news (I did not tell them what I was doing in these difficult days for the country).
I remember how scary it was to read the lists of the dead – I was so afraid to find someone close to me there … Once I even found the namesake of my friend there… After a while a photo of the deceased appeared, I realized that these are different people, but I did not have a sense of joy or feel relieved. Then on the Maidan we all became one big family, which is saddened by the loss of each member.
Now, looking back, I realize that the Revolution of Dignity has become a challenge that has shown who is who. Some of my acquaintances, who positioned themselves as the strongest patriots, immediately fled abroad after the first skirmishes. And, it would seem, indifferent people in those days were ready to give their lives for Ukraine.