Ukrainian family torn by war relocates to Tucson with hopes for fresh start | News

TUCSON (KVOA) — The attacks on Ukraine left many families displaced. Some fled for their lives.

Tucson City Councilman Steve Kozachik said Monday there are seven Ukrainian families now in Tucson, resettling in the city thanks to the Uniting for Ukraine Sponsorship Program.

Family medicine doctor and pediatrician, Tanya Kupleyatska, her husband Anton and their 5-year-old Kira are natives of Kharkiv, Ukraine.

The first day of the war is seared into their memory.

“I remember the sounds of that morning,” Tanya said. “I think I will remember those sounds all my life. We needed to work about seven years to make our lives good, and in one night, everything was destroyed. My office is destroyed.”

Kathy Melstead of Show Low is this family’s sponsor.

She spent time in Ukraine during her stint in the Peace Corps. Melstead was Tanya’s English teacher.

“I cried every night,” she said. “It was my home too for two years and you see it destroyed.”

Tanya does her best to keep in touch with her patients. Some of them are now scattered all over the world, starting over just like their doctor.

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“I have about 2,000 patients,” Tanya said. “It’s my family. I know their history of their lives. I know where they live. I know everything. I think maybe I spend more patients than with my family.”

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When Tanya and Anton left for America, they left their parents in Ukraine.

Tanya said her father is now fighting with the Ukrainian army.

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