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HomeLatest News"They drank valerian and survived": a pregnant resident of Mariupol fled her...

“They drank valerian and survived”: a pregnant resident of Mariupol fled her house when Ukrainian tanks entered the yard

Elena expects a daughter in May

Photo: Personal Archive

Elena and Alexander often traveled from Mariupol to Russia, to work in the city of Pushkino, near Moscow. But they could not even think that they would have to flee here from the Ukrainian tanks, leaving behind everything they had so hard won. Leaving my mother there.

UKRAINIANS BOMB Maternity Hospital

– Sasha is a builder, I am a seller, they left their son Kirill at home with his grandparents, they themselves earned money, – remembers Elena Gordeeva. – Last summer, dad died, we returned to Mariupol. Sasha found a good job there, I got pregnant. We were waiting for our daughter, we made repairs in the apartment, we bought equipment, we dreamed of how we would live happily as one big family.

On February 25, electricity, heating, water, gas and communications were cut off in Mariupol. Winter dragged on, there was frost in the courtyard, people survived as best they could: they drew water from the river, cooked over a fire in the courtyard, slept in their clothes. They went to bed at seven in the evening, at one in the morning they already woke up from the glare, heard the shelling and wondered: will it “sweep” this time?

“The best maternity hospital in the city, where she was going to give birth, was bombed by the Ukrainians, although there were no DPR people there, that is, they were stupidly shooting at civilians,” Elena Gordeeva told a correspondent from . – On March 18, I saw Ukrainian tanks entering our yard to hide between residential buildings. Soon the shelling started, it’s good that there is no one in the corridor at that time. We were standing at the time in the corridor. Therefore, they simply drank valerian and survived.

Elena with her son

Photo: Personal Archive

escape to nowhere

On March 19, Elena went for water and saw Ukrainian tanks for the second time. She knew right away that she had to run. She grabbed the documents, took her son from her hand, her husband grabbed a blanket and a pillow for Kirill. And then something happened that none of them expected:

Mom refused to go. Yes, pain in the legs, yes, it is difficult to walk, yes, the house is full of living creatures: a cat, a hamster and a parrot. But I could not even imagine that I would have to leave without her, – admits Elena. -But she had to do it. I recently heard from her through friends: in a letter from her she writes that she is alive. But the letter is uncertain. I’m afraid it’s not right. All the time I think how to get her out of there? How to get her to be with us again?

His own path to a peaceful life was very difficult. I ran between tanks, burned houses, shell casings, weapons, bombings and fear. They literally went nowhere. About ten kilometers later we came across a post, it turned out to be the DNR. Alexander was carefully checked to see if he was a saboteur. Elena was immediately sent to the hospital. From the stress experienced, she developed a strong tone, the doctors told her a little more and she could lose the child.

mom’s note


The family was sent to Taganrog, but they were allowed to stay in the temporary accommodation center for only one day: a new group of refugees was on the way. A friend of Pushkino sent money to Alexander, so they came to Moscow, where they lived for a couple of weeks in an apartment that they were renovating, and then they were able to rent a house in Pushkin, that’s where they plan to settle.

– He was so swollen he couldn’t walk. But when I got to the local maternity hospital, at first they refused to register me, says Elena Gordeeva. – Thanks to the deputy chief physician Andrei Leonardovich Lesnoy, who arranged for me to be put to bed. In the hospital I lost 5 kg, it was the same water that caused the swelling.

The United Russia party and the Women for Life charity foundation helped the family with food, clothes, baby things.

The family is expecting a daughter in May. They chose the name: Milana, which means “caring” and … “forgiven”. Elena and Alexander hope and believe that the baby will have a long and peaceful life, and most importantly, a peaceful life, full of love and happiness. Just like theirs.


Natalya Moskvitina, President of the Women for Life Foundation, member of the Commission on Demography, Protection of the Family, Children and Traditional Family Values ​​of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation:

– Since the beginning of the special operation, we have already helped about 700 refugees. For this, some projects of our fund were redesigned. We opened a hotline at our base, we began to collect food and things in special boxes “Mom’s Window” throughout Moscow. Part of the proceeds was given to temporary stay points in Rostov, and the rest is distributed in Moscow.

You can get psychological, legal, food assistance from us, we collect things, in special cases we help raise money for specific purposes: a refugee from Gorlovka received help to undergo joint replacement surgery, now we are preparing to announce a collection for He buys a wheelchair for a man in Taganrog.


Where to go for help:

– Women for Life Foundation website –

– by calling the fund’s hotline: 8 800 2000 492

What documents are needed:

– For psychological help – no

– For legal and medical advice – migration card and passport

– For groceries and clothing – Migration card, passport and birth certificates for children

– For material – documents, confirmation that there is some kind of problem


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