Phil & Mel In The Afternoon

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Photo by Martin Pope/Getty Images

I will say this upfront: this will bring tears to your eyes. The headline alone made me tear up. An 11-year-old boy traveled 600 miles by himself, escaping the war in the Ukraine. Daily I am amazed at the strength and determination of the Ukranian people.

The boy’s mother instructed him to leave the country so that he would be safe. She wrote his passport number and telephone numbers on his hand. This brave child traveled 600 miles with only the numbers scribbled on his hand.

According to boredpanda, The Ministry of Interior of the Slovak Republic posted the story. The family of the boy lived in Zaporizhzhia, which is close to the nuclear plant that recently came under attack from Russian forces.

The boy’s mother explained that she put her son on a train to Slovakia out of desperation. She had to stay back because she was unwell and had to look after her disabled mother.

Volunteers at the Slovakian border met the boy. They gave him food, warmth and were able to contact his loved ones in Slovakia. The Slovakian Interior Ministry said on Facebook that the boy “won everybody’s hearts with his smile, fearlessness and determination, worthy of a real hero.” His loved ones came for him soon after receiving the call. Local reports suggest the 11-year-old’s siblings have also made it to Slovakia.

Crying yet? Cause I am. This story reminds me of stories I heard as a child of Jewish relatives, with numbers tattooed on them, surviving concentration camps. Daily, I’m horrified by the situation in the Ukraine but daily I’m also in awe of the country’s people. They are strong and they are survivors.

This boy’s sweet face will stay in my brain for a while. Thank goodness he made it safely, and hopefully his mother and family will be able to join him.

There’s more to the story and more on this brave boy here.