On January 6, Mr. Bagshaw, 47, and Mr. Parry, 28, were last spotted leaving for the city of Soledar. According to Mr. Bagshaw’s relatives, the two were trying to save an elderly woman when a shell struck their cars.
The men died “attempting a humanitarian evacuation” according to Mr. Parry’s relatives. The body of one of the men was allegedly discovered earlier this month, according to the Russian mercenary outfit Wagner.
Soledar had been the scene of fierce combat, and earlier this month, Russia’s military asserted that it had, after a protracted conflict, taken control of the Ukrainian salt-mine town.
“It is with great sadness we have to announce that our beloved Chrissy has been killed along with his colleague Andrew Bagshaw whilst attempting a humanitarian evacuation from Soledar, eastern Ukraine.” Rob, Christine, and Katy Parry wrote in a statement released by the UK Foreign Office.
They stated of Mr. Parry, a native of Truro, Cornwall: “His selfless resolve to help the old, young, and underprivileged there has made us and his broader family immensely proud. When Chris still had a whole life ahead of him, we never thought we’d be saying goodbye to him. He was an excellent brother, a compassionate son, many people’s greatest friend, and Olga’s devoted spouse.
“Chris was a close friend to everyone he knew and a self-assured, outgoing, and adventurous young guy. As a software engineer, he traveled and lived elsewhere, but Cornwall was always his home. He had a passion for traveling and enjoyed activities like skydiving, running, cycling, and rock climbing.
“He was drawn to Ukraine in March at the beginning of the Russian invasion, during its darkest hour, and he assisted those in need, saving over 400 lives in addition to many abandoned animals.
“It is difficult to express how much we will miss him, but we will always remember him. We are incredibly grateful that he selected our family to be a part of.
Mr. Parry and Mr. Bagshaw had been performing volunteer work in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine. British national Mr. Bagshaw was a scientist who resided in New Zealand. Since April, he had been a volunteer in Ukraine.
His parents, Dame Sue and Prof. Phil Bagshaw, said that the guys had been bringing old people food and medications.
According to a statement provided to media outlets, Mr. Parry and Mr. Bagshaw “were trying to rescue an elderly woman from Soledar, in a region of intensive military action, when their automobile was hit by an artillery shell.
“Andrew selflessly took many personal risks and saved many lives; we love him and are very proud indeed of what he did.”
They continued, “The world needs to be strong and stand with Ukraine, giving them the military support they need now, and help to rebuild their shattered country after the war.”
The Foreign Office has confirmed that Christopher Parry died in Ukraine, and Truro and Falmouth’s Conservative MP Cherilyn Mackrory tweeted her sympathies to his family.
“My thoughts are with his family at this time, and I understand they are receiving support from Foreign Office staff.” he said.
The Foreign Office has already issued a travel advisory indicating that there is “a real risk to life” while visiting Ukraine.
If it is safe to do so, British nationals who are still in Ukraine should leave right away, the statement advised.
Eastern Ukraine is shown on the map as being under military control.
On January 2, Mr. Parry talked to BBC Radio Cornwall from the Bakhmut region of eastern Ukraine.
He gave the following justification for his presence: he wished to aid kids in particular.
“To be able to get them out of these war-torn areas, it makes it definitely more worthwhile than anything else that I can imagine,” he said.
“Yesterday I had a drone within about 10 metres of my face which was one of my scariest times here… generic bombardment overhead you just haven’t got the time or effort to be able to flinch for everyone because you’d spend half you life sitting on the floor.” the speaker said.
Mr. Parry admitted to serving as a volunteer evacuation driver to a free-lance journalist on January 3, three days before the volunteers vanished.
“I get requests from family members asking us to go pick up their relatives,” he said. Many volunteers no longer attend, but I’m prepared to go because there are people there who want to leave.