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Mother, daughter who lost legs in Russia-Ukraine arrive in San Diego for prosthetic care

Ukrainian refugee loses limbs in attack
Ukrainian refugee loses limbs in attack
Posted at 5:59 PM, Jul 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-05 00:58:58-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — On Monday, a family of injured Ukrainians arrived in San Diego to begin their journey to learn to walk again.

“It really is a special day here on July 4. On the day that we celebrate our independence, we're going to be able to give a mother and daughter their independence back,” said Roy Perkins with San Diego’s Right to Walk Foundation.

The foundation offers prosthetic care to amputees who are unable to afford it or access it. He and other supporters were at the airport to welcome the family.

Natalya Stepanenko and her daughter, Yana, were caught in a Russian missile attack on a train station in April. Natalya lost her left leg below the knee and 11-year-old Yana lost both legs below the knees.

Peter Harsch of Peter Harsch Prosthetics told ABC 10News, “You have a family that has lost multiple family members [including the] father and the grandparents from Russian bombing.”

The family is being relocated to San Diego for the next several months as they get fitted for prosthetic limbs and undergo extensive rehabilitation.

“My son is an amputee so I’ve been involved in this world for many years, and I understand how important it is to have a quality prosthetic that can allow you to live the life you want to live,” added Perkins.

The team met with the family for the first time last week in Poland. They hope that their stay in San Diego can help them with starting over.

“They want to go home one day and it's going to be our mission to get them back so that they can go back home,” added Harsch.