Cupertino Man Was in Ukraine as Violence Unfolded

A man from Cupertino was in Ukraine as the violence unfolded, and he returned home Sunday night.

Joseph Bagliere is a Peace Corps volunteer who said this has been one of the most exhausting weeks of his life.

"One of the most kind of maybe traumatic--being ripped away from the country and the people that you love the most, but this week has given me a chance to reflect on how resilient and how amazing the Ukrainian people are," he said. "And how we should never take for granted our freedom and what we have here."

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Bagliere and hundreds of other Peace Corps volunteers were evacuated from Ukraine, flown to Washington D.C., and finally, to their respective home towns. Bagliere arrived at San Jose International Airport Sunday night.

"Now, with all these things happening in Cremia, I can understand why we’re here now, but still, I would like to be there, more so than home at the present time," Bagliere said. "I have a girlfriend back there so that’s really difficult to leave her."

The 25-year-old said while the images coming out of Kiev have been hard to look at, underneath the cause is important.

"Now the world more than ever needs to look at Ukraine and see how beautiful they are and how resilient they are and how their ideals are not too far different than American ideals."

Bagliere said this is a pivotal point in the country’s history, and he has a message to some of his Ukrainian friends who are part of what he said is a revolution--a fight for freedom.

"Glory to Ukraine," he said. "And Glory to the heroes."

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