"Crawled out of a burning car": the incredible story of the rescue of a 21-year-old Ukrainian world champion in Donbas

Elena PavlovaLife
Stanislav Zoriy resisted the occupiers in Donbas

The incredible will to live was demonstrated by 21-year-old kickboxer Stanislav Zoriy, who took up arms and defended his homeland after Russia's full-scale invasion began. The world junior champion from Ivano-Frankivsk was the only survivor of the car destroyed by the occupiers.

The story of the young athlete who came under enemy fire in Donbas was shared on Facebook by Sergey Ryzhenko, CEO of the Mechnikov Dnipro Regional Clinical Hospital. 


"Now it's a long road to a new life. His belief in victory, his farewell, the tears of the nurses - they overwhelm my heart with emotion. Stanislav is 21 years old. He has devoted his entire short life to sports. At the age of 18, he became a world junior kickboxing champion. He graduated from university with a degree in law and economics," Ryzhenko said.


But at the beginning of the war, according to the Honoured Doctor of Ukraine, Stanislav put his medals and diplomas on a shelf and went to Donbas, where he met death face to face.

"A mine tore the car to pieces. Everyone was killed, but Stanislav crawled out of the burning car with a severed limb and torn pieces of flesh on his back and lost consciousness. He was taken to Mechnikov Hospital in a coma," Ryzhenko recalled.


The doctors at the Dnipro hospital, Sergey Kosulnikov and Valentina Lisnycha, did everything possible to keep Zoriy alive.

"He underwent intensive care and a large number of operations, but he survived, becoming a symbol of great human love and lust for life. Pity does not warm him. He is ready for a happy life. Smiling, he leaves Dnipro and Mechnikov Hospital," Sergiy Ryzhenko summed up the amazing story of the wounded man's rescue.


In 2020, at the open kickboxing championship of the Ivano-Frankivsk region of Ukraine, Stanislav Zoriy, the 2018 ISKA world kickboxing champion and 2019 WKA world champion, noted that his sport develops a fighter's character. And perhaps it is thanks to this very character that he crawled out of the car destroyed by the enemy and survived in the hospital ward.


Earlier, OBOZREVATEL told the story of a Mykolaiv athlete and defender of Mariupol, whom his mother had been waiting for 11 months after he was released from Russian captivity.

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