A YOUNG Ukrainian ice hockey star has fled to Swindon after his local ice rink was hit by Russian missiles. 

Ten-year-old Myron Levadna played Ice Hockey for the national 'Dynamo Kharkiv team' and trained in Kharkiv city twice a day, five times a week. 

He had always dreamed of playing professional ice hockey and, before the war, was even part of the youth Olympic reserve team. 

But when the local ice rink in Kharkiv where Myron was training was hit by a Russian missile, his mother Kateryna Levadna knew it was time to get to a safe country. 

Swindon Advertiser: Kateryna and Myron LevadnaKateryna and Myron Levadna (Image: Swindon Welcomes Ukraine)

“There was so much destruction and loss of life, I was so scared for my family that when I heard about the UK Homes for Ukraine Scheme, I knew I had to try and find a host and escape to England," she said. 

Kateryna posted on Facebook for a sponsor to host them and luckily found one in Swindon, Bindoo Rattan and her partner, who live in West Swindon.

“I had recently joined the Swindon Welcomes Ukraine Committee to do what I could to help,” said Bindoo.

“I found Kateryna and we got talking and I really wanted to offer her and Myron a safe place to stay.  So we applied for visas and got them over as quickly as we could.  It’s been 9 months now, and they both feel like part of the family.”   

Swindon Advertiser: Mother and son Kateryna and Myron Levadna who fled Ukraine and West Swindon resident Bindoo Rattan who has taken them inMother and son Kateryna and Myron Levadna who fled Ukraine and West Swindon resident Bindoo Rattan who has taken them in (Image: Swindon Welcomes Ukraine)

As well as his training, Myron now attends Shaw Ridge Primary School in Swindon.  

Through their manager, Charlotte, Myron now plays for the youth team of the Swindon Wildcats.

Charlotte added, “it’s been fantastic to have Myron join our youth team.  Not only is he an incredibly talented player but he is getting on really well with the others and setting a new standard. 

"He works incredibly hard too and that drive is what we aspire to install in all of our young players”. 

The Swindon Wildcats’ parents group have also helped Myron by raising funds to help with kit and travel to games. 

Kateryna added, “We are so grateful for the opportunities we have in Swindon. Now children in Ukraine have little opportunity to go to school, play sports or lead a normal life."

Swindon Advertiser: Myron's ice hockey team in UkraineMyron's ice hockey team in Ukraine (Image: Swindon Welcomes Ukraine)

Myron is one of two Ukrainian children that have joined the Wildcats which is something that Swindon Wildcats Academy chairman Lee Mason, is proud of

"I would like to thank our volunteer coaches and managers and all of our Academy families for making both boys so welcome," he said. 

To find out more about hosting visit www.ukraineswindon.com