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Marriage on the frontline: Couple says “I do” while preparing for battle in Ukraine

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Valery and Lesya

Genya SAVILOV | AFP

Cerith Gardiner - published on 03/09/22

Dressed in military fatigues, the couple are filled with joy as they exchange their vows.

A couple of civil defense volunteers, Lesya and Valeri, were married at a military checkpoint near Kyiv.

The pair were battle-ready as they shared their vows. Despite the location, the beautiful Ukrainian tradition of holding a crown above the bride’s head was upheld, although the headpiece was swapped out for a helmet. There was a palpable joy for the couple from all those gathered, including the mayor of Kyiv (also a former world champion boxer), Vitaliy Klitschko, who was at the ceremony and first to wish congratulations to the newlyweds as reported by the BBC.

Those gathered to witness the wedding shared their delight and joined in the now-familiar chant of “Slava Ukraini” or Glory to Ukraine — the official salute of the country’s armed forces that seems particularly fitting with this military marriage. While the celebration was a welcomed respite in the ongoing war, the union was also a sign of hope for a better future to come.

We wish the couple a blessed and happy marriage, and pray they get to share their wedding photos with their future grandchildren.

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