Artur Haltsov | Wounds

Artur Haltsov

Artur Haltsov, 24, took part in the Maidan movement in Dnipropetrovsk. He later volunteered to serve in the Right Sector battalion. Artur is currently undergoing specialized care at Nodus, a modern neurological and neurosurgical rehabilitation center located outside of the Ukrainian capital Kyiv. 

Artur’s father, Valera, tells his son’s story:

Artur Haltzov, Brovary, Ukraine, ©Joseph Sywenkyj 2015

This is how it all happened: he was on a mission with his friend who was torn to pieces in front of his own eyes. Artur then collected him bit by bit into a cellophane sack and carried him back to base.

This happened in Vodyane [Donetsk oblast]. Pisky is nearby, on the front line.

Artur Haltzov, Brovary, Ukraine, ©Joseph Sywenkyj 2015

He was with us in Dnipropetrovsk at hospital #11. He had some stomach problems and was supposed to be treated on the 13th [of January 2015] and then go back to his base. On the 11th is when it all happened. A nurse and a doctor on duty asked him to carry two civilian corpses. At this time Artur was more or less healthy and weighed 80kg (176 lbs). A strong healthy guy, he didn’t refuse. He carried the two civilian corpses to the morgue and then had a nervous breakdown. He threw himself out of a window.

Artur Haltzov, Brovary, Ukraine, ©Joseph Sywenkyj 2015

I know that this [PTSD] needs a lot of work because he is not the only one like this. All the guys that come back from there need highly specialized care to restore the nervous system. I know that in America after the Afghan and Vietnam wars, they began to take the psychological healing of soldiers very seriously. We are far behind. I thank the volunteers. They are wonderful. I myself would not be able to handle it [constantly working with wounded soldiers in such a state].

Artur Haltzov, Brovary, Ukraine, ©Joseph Sywenkyj 2015

He didn’t have enough time in his life to accomplish anything.

Artur’s condition is better compared to how it was before. He weighed 30-35 kg. I have a photograph I took which reveals the state he was in at Hospital # 4.

Artur Haltzov, Brovary, Ukraine, ©Joseph Sywenkyj 2015

On the first day, when he was initially brought to Hospital #4, they told me right away ‘prepare your family, prepare a coffin, reserve a place in the cemetery. He has three days left.’ He has been struggling for the past four months since then.

Artur has been in this state since January 11 [the date he attempted suicide]. They brought him here [to Nodus] only recently. We had a serious situation after he was treated in intensive care at Mechnikova [a hospital in Dnipropetrovsk]. The doctors there are very good. But afterward he was brought to hospital #4, we have such an oblast hospital, and the doctor there is a separatist. It was he who brought Artur to this state.

Artur was in Right Sector.  

Artur Haltzov, Brovary, Ukraine, ©Joseph Sywenkyj 2015

Volunteers paid for his treatment. Only thanks to volunteers. The Government? By and large, [our guys in ATO] protect also their families, not only ours. The rich guys with such large ugly faces – they hid away their children [from mobilization], but other people’s children, I’m sorry to say, were sent as cannon fodder.

Right Sector always went to the most dangerous areas. Theses guys enthusiastically went for the right reasons. They fought for what is theirs. They did not do this for money or for medals. They didn’t want any of these things. They only want to live in a free Ukraine.

To assist Artur please visit: ATO Heroes