HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – While they may be thousands of miles away from Ukraine, one Conway area couple is finding ways to help those caught up in the war between Russia and Ukraine.
“It’s just unimaginable,” said Walt Melkyn. “You live in America and you see how free and blessed we are and then you see a country get invaded and a lot of people dying on both sides. Not just the Ukrainian side, but a lot of young men on the Russia side too are getting killed and that’s just really heartbreaking.”
Walt has 29 family members currently living in Lviv, Ukraine while Judy has served seven medical mission trips to Ukraine.
“The opportunity came through a church back home in Ohio to take a team, lead a team to Ukraine to show them how to use their laparoscopic equipment in the operating room,” said Judy Melkyn.
When Russia invaded Ukraine in February, the couple knew they had to do something to help the people that lived there and Walt’s family.
“That’s where we ended up raising over $3,000 and had over 100 pounds of medicine of Tylenol and baby aspirin to ship,” said Judy.
Six months later, the couple is holding another fundraiser. This time called “Lakestock.”
It’s a throwback to “Woodstock” where three different acts of live music will perform outdoors around the pond in their neighborhood.
Lakeside Crossing residents are invited to set up their chairs on the lawn around the lake and enjoy the venue. They are also encouraged to bring a monetary donation in support of the event. Blue and yellow canisters will be available around the lake to help collect money for the cause.
“Here at Lakeside Crossing, it’s a very giving, giving, loving community and living on a fixed income and for them to give, it’s just beautiful. They are so not selfish and they want to support,” said Judy Melkyn.
The event will take place at 7 p.m. Saturday, September 17.
The Melkyns also made yellow and blue wristbands to give out to those who attend.
“Don’t forget about Ukraine and that’s what the wristband is about,” said Judy Melkyn. “Don’t forget about Ukraine, because they still are under war and thankfully recently, the United States and other countries have given Ukrainians power. Ammunition power to really fight the war.”
There are still multiple organizations providing aid to Ukraine including UNICEF and the International Committee of the Red Cross.
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