Ukrainian student at Cumberland University fears for her family's safety

Lina Young
Posted at 6:08 PM, Mar 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-01 19:42:07-05

LEBANON, Tenn. (WTVF) — A Ukrainian student at Cumberland University fears for her family's safety.

Lina Young showed a video from a family friend who lives in Kyiv. The helicopter was shooting off warning flares reportedly used as self-defense from missiles.

Young's dad lives near the Black Sea. She said it's surreal to see videos of citizens blocking tanks from moving and fighting Russians. "I try to text them every half hour. You never know which half hour will be the last," Young said.

Sometimes on the other line, there's the sound of explosions. "As a parent, it’s the worst thing you can say to a kid. He called me and told me he loves me cause the troops were coming in," Young said.

So far, her family is OK. "I feel like in my head I’m in a game, or I’m in a TV show, or I’m in a dream, and I’ll wake up, and all this will end,” Young said. "But as it goes on, it feels more real seeing people die."

It's tough watching the conflict unfold from afar. "You can see people drive through bombing and when this explosion goes up… there’s no more people," Young said.

A television tower was knocked out in a deadly missile strike. Since some of her family can't watch the news now, she tries to update them on what's happening from the United States. "I feel like I’m in such an awkward position of not being able to do anything, and just watching my family suffer," Young said.

Now, she's waiting to see what will happen next as Ukraine attempts to join the European Union for support.

"From the bottom of my heart I’m like if we’re going down, we’re going down together. But then my brain’s like — You don’t want to die. If the U.S. gets in, we don’t know how [the] Russian President will react to that as he has threatened so much," Young said.

Young said she hasn't been able to talk to her grandma in a couple of days. However, her friend was able to check in and make sure she is alright.