Andy Huynh is one of two American volunteer soldiers serving with a regular Ukrainian army unit who is believed to have been captured by Russian forces last week.
The other soldier sources believe was also captured is named Alexander Drueke. The Daily Telegraph learned exclusively from a comrade of the two volunteer soldiers that they were captured during a battle last Thursday. The comrade asked to remain anonymous.
The battle occurred in the northeast city of Kharkiv.
“We were out on a mission and the whole thing went absolutely crazy, with bad intel,” the comrade told The Daily Telegraph. “We were told the town was clear when it turned out the Russians were already assaulting it.”
He says they believe the men were captured after being knocked out by an anti-tank mine or a tank shooting at them. He says later that night a message appeared on a Russian Telegram channel claiming two Americans had been captured.
According to The Washington Post, the United States has not deployed any official military personnel to Ukraine. American soldiers like Huynh and Drueke are volunteers.
Huynh, 27, was born in California. According to The Daily Telegraph, he grew up in the Tennessee Valley area of Alabama. He has previously served in the U.S. Marines.
Joy Black, Huynh’s partner, told The Daily Telegraph that his fellow soldiers called her on Monday to tell her Huynh was missing. Black had tried to convince Huynh not to go to Ukraine.
In an interview with WAAY 31 ABC TV back in April, Huynh said he was prepared to risk his life to fight alongside young Ukrainian soldiers.
“I know there is a potential of me dying,” he said in the interview. “I’m willing to give my life for what I believe is right, for what I have been taught what is right.”
“He didn’t tell me anything about the operation he was on last week, as he didn’t want to scare me. I just want to have him back safely,” she told The Daily Telegraph.
The State Department confirmed to The Daily Telegraph that they had heard reports of two captured US citizens.
“We are aware of unconfirmed reports of two US citizens captured in Ukraine. We are closely monitoring the situation and are in contact with Ukrainian authorities. Due to privacy considerations, we have no further comment,” they said in a statement.
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