Bay Area family welcomes elderly relatives who left Kyiv, Ukraine amid bombings

ByRyan Curry KGO logo
Friday, March 11, 2022
Fremont family welcomes relatives from war-torn Ukraine
A Ukrainian couple arrived safely in San Francisco and reunited with family Thursday after leaving Kyiv.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A Ukrainian family from Fremont was reunited with relatives on Thursday who escaped Kyiv -- an emotional scene after a more than 6,000-mile journey.

Yuriy Drozd and his wife brought a large Ukraine flag with them to the customs gate at San Francisco International Airport. They were set to meet his aunt and uncle who had just arrived from Ukraine.

TAKE ACTION: Local and national support for people in Ukraine

"It is one less nervous hole everyday," Drozd said after embracing his family.

He and is wife live in Fremont. Their relatives had to board a bus to the Hungary border. From there, they got on a train to take them to Budapest. They were able to fly from Budapest to Munich and later land in San Francisco.

"It is tough for them because where they live in Kyiv is essentially getting carpet bombed by Russians," Yuriy said.

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Babies Lenny and Moishe were born premature at a hospital in Kyiv on Feb. 25, the second day of Russia's invasion.

Ever since the war started, Yuriy has been in constant communication with his family. He says some are still in Ukraine, but are safe.

He says many don't want to leave, but he thought it would be best for his elderly aunt and uncle to be safer in the U.S.

"We hope the fighting ends soon," Drozd said. "But they can stay as long as they need. It has been tough on all of us, so as long as we are together."

Take a look at the latest updates on the Ukraine-Russia war.