new_cd_banner_3_2019.png
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Funerals begin for dozens of people killed in an attack on a Dnipro apartment complex

The coffin of boxing coach Mykhailo Korenovsky arrives at a cemetery on the outskirts of Dnipro, Ukraine, on Tuesday. Korenovsky died in the residential building that was hit in Dnipro on Saturday.
Claire Harbage
/
NPR
The coffin of boxing coach Mykhailo Korenovsky arrives at a cemetery on the outskirts of Dnipro, Ukraine, on Tuesday. Korenovsky died in the residential building that was hit in Dnipro on Saturday.

DNIPRO, Ukraine — In a cemetery on the outskirts of the Ukrainian city of Dnipro, mourners gathered for the burial of Mykhailo Korenovsky, a boxing coach killed Saturday in the Russian missile strike on an apartment building.

Korenovsky is among the more than 40 people who were killed in the strike, one of many attacks on civilians far from the front lines since Russia's full-scale invasion began last February. Young children, a pregnant woman and a 15-year-old ballet dancer were also among the victims.

Mourners throw soil into the grave over Korenovsky's coffin.
Claire Harbage / NPR
/
NPR
Mourners throw soil into the grave over Korenovsky's coffin.

Three priests, standing at the edge of Korenovsky's coffin, presided over the burial with prayers and song. As the coffin was lowered into the ground, Olha Korenovska, Mikhailo's wife, hid her face in a bouquet of yellow roses. After a moment, she lifted her head and began to trace her hand across a framed photo of her husband's face, set up at the foot of the gravesite.

Hundreds of people came to the cemetery to pay their respects; many of the mourners were young men whom Korenovsky had trained. They brought flowers, and several men brought boxing gloves.

Korenovsky's wife, Olha Korenovska, touches a portrait of her husband at the funeral.
Claire Harbage / NPR
/
NPR
Korenovsky's wife, Olha Korenovska, touches a portrait of her husband at the funeral.

"He was always a positive person, he made a lot of jokes," one of the students he trained who attends the Pridniprovsk State Academy of Physical Education and Sport told a Ukrainian TV station. "He was kind and helped a lot. He was a great man."

Officials say 45 people died in the attack, and 19 are still unaccounted for. Korenovsky's funeral is one of the first of many that will take place in the coming days.

Priests walk through the cemetery as mourners gather for Korenovsky's funeral.
Claire Harbage / NPR
/
NPR
Priests walk through the cemetery as mourners gather for Korenovsky's funeral.
A crowd of hundreds attends the funeral of the beloved boxing coach.
Claire Harbage / NPR
/
NPR
A crowd of hundreds attends the funeral of the beloved boxing coach.

NPR's Lauren Migaki contributed to this report from Kyiv.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Elissa Nadworny reports on all things college for NPR, following big stories like unprecedented enrollment declines, college affordability, the student debt crisis and workforce training. During the 2020-2021 academic year, she traveled to dozens of campuses to document what it was like to reopen during the coronavirus pandemic. Her work has won several awards including a 2020 Gracie Award for a story about student parents in college, a 2018 James Beard Award for a story about the Chinese-American population in the Mississippi Delta and a 2017 Edward R. Murrow Award for excellence in innovation.