By Tori Hil | May 27, 2023
Bringing Home Grady
The remains of U.S. Marine veteran who was missing for over a year in Ukraine returned to the United States on Friday, May 19, 2023. The Romulus T. Weatherman Team worked tirelessly to locate and bring Marine Captain Grady Kurpasi home. Kurpasi, 50-year-old Iraq War veteran, volunteered in February 2022 to help evacuate Ukrainian residents and later fought in the Ukrainian Foreign Legion.
“There is an unspoken bond between those who serve in uniform — if you give your life in combat, your fellow Americans will bear any burden to bring you home…”
- Romulus T. Weatherman President and Army veteran, Dr. Meaghan Mobbs
“It’s humbling, and it’s the honor of a lifetime, to help his family bring his remains home. He is the definition of a great American.”
- Romulus T. Weatherman Co-Founder, Andrew Duncan
SOS Attitude was one of the BIG donors for the month, again!
A truckload of generators arrived and will be quickly sent to some of the hardest hit regions in Ukraine like Donetsk, Kramatorsk, Uman, and Kherson regions.
Additionally, we were able to assist an NGO in Dnipro that serves families and children.
Thank you, SOS Attitude, for your continued support. These contributions are incredible gifts that bring relief to suffering regions.
Artillery and missile attacks continue to take a heavy toll on the Kherson Oblast.
A truck full of medical beds, hospital equipment, furniture, and a generator were sent to Hostyna Khata to supply a clinic supporting civilian casualties from the Kherson Region.
We are grateful for the support of our partners and donors who help us continue to provide aid to the areas that need it the most.
The International Summit of Cities and Regions
The Romulus T. Weatherman Foundation Team attended The International Summit of Cities and Regions. This summit was hosted by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities under the President of Ukraine.
The Romulus T. Weatherman Foundation was the only US based NGO to attend. Many of our partners across Romania and Ukraine were in attendance, as well.
The highlight of the event for many was hearing Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, speak about the challenges occurring in Ukraine. The event was well attended and helped our team develop crucial relationships that support our mission.
While In Ukraine…
The Romulus T. Weatherman Team visited the Korolenko Kharkiv Special Education Complex which was destroyed by bombing. Fortunately, no one was injured in the attack. Founded in 1887, The Korolenko Kharkiv Special Education Complex is one of the oldest and most famous institutions for visually impaired children. Children from all over Ukraine have attended this school and it will take an incredible amount of work to rebuild it.
Dr. Meaghan Mobbs, was a keynote speaker at a woman’s leadership conference hosted in Kharkiv, Ukraine by regional council leader, Tetiana Yehorova-Lutsenko. Kharkiv has seen the devastation that war brings to a city under fire. However, this group of resilient leaders are working to bring long term improvements and change to all of Ukraine, boosting the leadership of women and rebuilding the lives of their families and communities.
Partnerships, Old and New.
Tony Sundermeier, Director of Logistics and Partnerships, runs the Tulcea Humanitarian Hub (THLH), in Tulcea, Romania and received an urgent request from the The British Expeditionary Aid and Rescue (BEAR). BEAR is an NGO that delivers aid to the small villages in Mykolaiv Oblast and Kherson Oblast. BEAR embodies our philosophy of pushing aid directly to the children and families that need it the most.
In one week, the THLH sent about a truck load of food, hygiene products and building materials to BEAR to be distributed to the villages they service. These villages have no running water, no infrastructure, and no real commerce. Everything was destroyed by the Russians before they were pushed out by the Ukrainian Army.
Additionally, Manifest Mira, a old network partner, jumped in to help to make sure the products arrived safely.
THANK YOU, PARTNERS!
Delivering aid to the Kherson villages
NOROC is an organization dedicated to helping orphans and foster children in this part of Romania.
On May 14th, a group of 10 children from the NOROC foundation came to the Tulcea Hub to work preparing a food shipment to send to Ukraine. They built food boxes and prepared pallets for the awaited food procurement. These shipments would be sent to family and orphanage NGO’s across Ukraine. The students learned warehousing skills like working with pallet jacks, shrink wrapping, and boxing skills. Our team and NOROC’s students had a great time together, working to help Ukraine.
Tony and Natalie Sundermeier from the RTW Team visited a group home where 7 children from NOROC live.
Going Away Celebration
The team turned out to honor and say thank you to volunteer Natalie Sundermeier!
Natalie, an ambassador, friend, and mentor to all, volunteered at the Tulcea Hub several times over the last 14 months and has been an incredible help to the people of Ukraine. Natalie has worked with drivers, shipping companies, and our in-country team.
She has also set up our truck tracking systems, developed methods and forms to manage the business of the Hub, created and maintained relationships with NGO’s, and countless other tasks.
It is her humanity, love, empathy and care of those around her that make her so special.
In a toast, Natalie was referred to as the "Mother" by the 11 refugees who came to Tulcea, with only a little more than a suitcase. She helped create a feeling of family on the team today.
We tend to always focus on results, 10,000 tons shipped to Ukraine estimated at over $100M, with a delivery performance of 99.9%. However, none of this is possible without the dedicated team of people, who embody the Romulus T. Weatherman spirit of pushing aid to the hardest hit, hardest to reach places.
Thank you, Natalie, for your contribution to the Romulus T. Weatherman Foundation, everything you have done for The Tulcea Humanitarian Logistics Hub, and for Ukraine.
Women, Peace, and Security
We are partnering with International Stability Operations Association’s (ISOA) Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) for an event. This event will honor Ukrainian women soldiers from a special operations unit. Keep an eye out for more information regarding this event on June 6, 2023 at 9:00AM EST!
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