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"There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling": a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

Olena PavlovaSport
A sergeant of the 3rd Brigade took a risk to save his men

The sergeant of the legendary 3rd Brigade with the call sign "Goose" was a coach and representative of the Maxx racing kart sports team before the full-scale war with Russia. And after February 24, 2022, he managed to fight in the Kherson sector and survived the most difficult operation in Bakhmut, when every extra minute on the way to the hospital would have cost his comrades' lives.

For the "Episodes of War" project, the fighter told how, after a successful operation in the Kherson region, he and his comrades got into the hell of Bakhmut. In the hottest spot of Donetsk region, "Goose" risked his life to evacuate his severely wounded brothers from under fire, and soon afterwards became a father for the second time.

''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut
''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

"We were already "tiger-tuned" and ready for the operation in Bakhmut, which was the most difficult of all! As I am very fond of equipment, being a machine gunner in the unit, I decided to get the M113 driver-mechanic license. After that, I was an armor driver in my unit," the coach and defender recalled.

''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

According to "Goose", on the day they set out for the operation, everything went wrong from the start.

"The hydraulic board broke down. My unit would not have been able to make a quick landing and immediately perform the mission, so it was decided that my unit would go in another vehicle with another driver. Within 5 minutes after the operation began, I heard on the radio about the first 300 and possible 200... 15 minutes of listening to the radio was like an eternity," the trainer said.

''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

"Goose" realized that his comrades were in hell, with no way to quickly extract the seriously wounded: "After another 15 minutes, we knew that most of my platoon needed to be evacuated. My company commander and I decided that I could at least take the heavy wounded and, under the cover of armor, lead the light wounded to a place where they could wait it out."

''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

"Later, with the guys, because of a faulty harness, we put a fellow soldier on a stretcher into an armored vehicle, who had no living space on his body, some limbs were torn off... But he looked at me and smiled. That was the motivation to get everyone out as soon as possible. His life was already counting down to minutes, because he was bleeding from almost every part of his body," the squad leader recalled.

''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

The route that "Goose" and his wounded comrades took to get to the hospital from the outskirts of Bakhmut was the shortest and most dangerous route, compared to the one that was twice as long. But under fire from all Russian weapons, he was already in front of the hospital in 6 minutes: "And it was a little easier, because the most seriously wounded was no longer in danger."

''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

"Nevertheless, my desire to save everyone did not stop time... A week later I was already standing in Kyiv and seeing off one of my brothers in arms... And 5 days later my second son was born. These days have exhausted me morally, but I keep coming back to the idea that revenge for the guys, for our freedom and protection of children is the most important thing for me!" the defense lawyer said.

''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

 

''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut
''There was not a living spot on his body, but he was smiling'': a squad leader tells about the risky evacuation of the 3rd Brigade near Bakhmut

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