Athletes are also ready to defend the country’s independence in addition to the professional military. At the beginning of the war, former lightweight world champion Vasily Lomachenko joined the ranks of the territorial defense. Ukrainian footballers Oleksander Zinchenko and Andriy Shevchenko have become volunteers and helped the Red Cross. The brother of the Kyiv mayor, Volodymyr Klitschko, also takes an active part in the formation of the defense of the capital. Oleksandr Usyk, the WBA super heavyweight champion, WBO, IBF, and IBO also volunteered during the war.
Anastasia Merkushina famous biathlete joined the ranks of the heroes of Ukraine last. She switched the sporting rifle to an automatic rifle and became a part of the Ukrainian border guards.
"The flag of Ukraine has been repeatedly raised in my honor. It’s time to defend it and change the biathlon rifle to an automatic rifle," said the biathlete.