Relatives mourn 4-year-old girl killed in rocket attack

Family and friends of Liza Dmitrieva wiped away tears Sunday as four men carried her coffin to the cathedral, where a photograph of a smiling girl lay among roses and teddy bears three days after her death. died as a result of a Russian cruise missile strike.

The death of Lisa, a 4-year-old girl with Down Syndrome, nicknamed “Sunshine Flower” by her family, epitomizes cruelty Russian invasion of Ukraine.

On Thursday, she was walking with her mother, pushing her pram through a park, when a flash of fire and metal fragments erupted near them in Vinnytsia, a central Ukrainian city far from the front lines where there was still no sense of normality. seemed possible.

The impact killed 22 people, including two other children, and injured 140 others. Liza’s mother, Irina Dmitrieva, has lost her leg and is unconscious.

According to an Associated Press video, on Sunday, Lisa’s family, who had just learned their first words and were proud of organizing toys, watched as the coffin was taken to the cathedral.

When Priest Vitaly Goloskevich began to speak, he held a cross in one hand and wiped tears from his cheek with the other.

“Elizabeth,” he began, “stands and looks beside God.” His voice cracked as he looked at the coffin containing the body of a girl whose portrait showed her with pigtails long enough to touch her fluffy purple coat.

Pictures of Lisa’s body lying next to an overturned carriage and her mother’s severed leg have been around the world since they were shared online State Service of Ukraine for Emergency Situations. The visceral nature of the images cut through the all-too-familiar stream of daily violence against civilians by the Russian military.

On Sunday, the men carrying Liza’s coffin to the cemetery wore pink armbands, and her father, Artyom Dmitriev, walked behind them with his eyes closed as two men supported him by the shoulders.

At her grave, dozens gathered around an open coffin, where plush toys lay on Lisa’s lap: a white bunny, a gray bear, a crossed elk. mr. Dmitriev knelt down and wept.

When the string orchestra began to play, Liza’s grandmother, Larisa Dmitrishina, shouted to her granddaughter: The song, according to her, was played “for you to hear it.”

The workers then closed the coffin and lowered it into the grave.

Lisa’s family picked up the earth and covered it with earth.