Watch now: Nebraska sends protective equipment to help Ukraine | Govt. & Policy


Nebraska has sent 550 pieces of used military and law enforcement protective gear to Ukraine to help protect Ukrainians fighting Russian troops who have invaded their country, Gov. Pete Ricketts announced Wednesday.

The equipment was delivered to Des Moines where it was to be flown to Ukraine with the equipment assembled in Iowa.

“We want to help the Ukrainian people to fight this aggression,” the governor said. “We support Ukraine,” the governor said at a news conference attended by representatives of the Ukrainian Catholic Church and a ninth-grader named Lexi Fedoronko who tearfully declared that her grandparents were still in Ukraine.

They all asked Nebraskans to pray for the Ukrainian people.

Among the donated items shipped from Nebraska were 321 pieces of body armor and 69 helmets.

Cass County Sheriff’s Lt. Larry Burke said his department donated 30 to 40 vests, which typically cost around $400 each. He told the Omaha World-Herald that each vest is at least 5 years old, meaning it no longer meets law enforcement standards.

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Normally, Burke said the sheriff’s office would dispose of the vests through a vendor, but “it was a way to clean up our storage and (they) will hopefully go for a good cause.”

Pete Ricketts

Ricketts said the people of Ukraine are currently experiencing “enormous suffering” as a result of Russia’s “unprovoked attack”.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has created “the worst refugee crisis since World War II”, the governor said. “Nebraskanians stand with Ukraine.”

Bennet Goldstein of the Omaha World-Herald contributed to this report.

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