Area Ukrainian-Americans "Heartbroken" by Violence in Kiev

Feb 20, 2014

Local residents with ties to the Ukraine are expressing their shock and sadness at the ongoing unrest in that country.

Dianna Derhak was born in the United States, but has family and friends in Ukraine, where she spent 14 years working in business development.

Derhak says the people of Ukraine action from the west by freezing the assets stolen from Ukraine could help put an end to the violence.

There's a fairly large Ukrainian population here, and she says it's "gut-wrenching" for them to see what's happening there.

Derhak adds her acquaintances there are taking things "day by day." And they want a solution now.

Meanwhile, Tanya Dashkevich was born in Ukraine, but moved here over 20 years ago.

She says she cries every time she reads news accounts of what is happening in Ukraine, and says it's hard to believe something like this is taking place in the 21st century.

Dashkevich says people here of Ukrainian descent have been in constant contact with friends and relatives there since the unrest began.

At least 70 protesters have died in clashes with police in Kiev.