The last three weeks, Pete and I had spent hours and days together. We were working on setting up the evacuation network and during that time, he became one of my best friends in Ukraine, outside of our immediate and extended team. Last week, we were planning a trip where we would go into Bakhmut together to meet with local people about the evacuation needs in the city.
We weren’t able to go in together so Pete and his team went in to have these meetings. They didn’t show up on time. We soon got a phone call that their team was bombed in the city. Pete died and three others were injured. The only person that had not gotten injured was the guy who called us.
Five hours later, we were told that Pete was found alive in the back of an ambulance, but the next morning, I found that the rumor was false. A military unit went into Bakhmut to track down his body and they found him and confirmed he was dead.
Pete’s death was like a punch in the gut for me. We enjoyed working together and were excited at the prospect of doing that for a long time. There’s also the aspect that I was planning to be along when this happened. It makes me think deep things…
He died doing what he was passionate about. They were driving through the city while it was being bombed. They came upon a vehicle that had just been hit and was on fire. One person was laying on the road beside the vehicle and another injured person was sitting nearby. In true Pete-style he whipped in with his vehicle and jumped out to provide medical care.
What he didn’t know is the Russians were waiting till rescuers come. Once Pete and his people came to the patients, the Russians dropped another bomb and killed him. Pete must have heard it come screaming in, since he was killed shielding someone else. This person survived the blast.
Pray for his family and everyone involved.