As Russian airstrikes continue, over half a million people have fled Ukraine, many of them going to Poland.
William Shaw, a native of Shoreview, Minnesota, has spent the last nine years in Krakow, Poland, with his family. His Polish wife is from Ukraine, and the two met there.
He claimed he received a call from a buddy on Thursday, when Russian soldiers first began shelling Ukraine, asking whether he had place to accommodate a fleeing family.
“We were like, ‘Of course,'” Shaw explained to FOX 9.
The family’s two-bedroom apartment was soon occupied by a father, mother, and their two-year-old daughter. The family’s grandma was reunited with them in Poland not long after. They are grateful to be secure, but they are saddened by what is occurring in their homeland.
“They’re glad that they’re here, grateful that they’re safe,” Shaw said. “But there’s clearly a melancholy there.”
They’ve all moved in with the Shaws now. They’ll soon be moving into their own apartment, which they obtained for free thanks to the Shaw family. The Shaws are collaborating with others in Poland to assist additional migrants when they arrive.
“We’ve been coordinating to attempt to unite people who can house refugees with people we know or with contacts we know,” Shaw added.
While the family he assisted is relieved to be safe, he hopes they are only in Poland for a short time.
“They want to go back and rebuild as soon as there’s calm, as soon as the bullets stop flying,” Shaw added.