Volodymyr Ponka Ukranian Martyr

Volodymyr Ponka

August 24, 2023

Senior soldier Volodymyr Ponka, nicknamed Chip, tragically lost his life on August 24, 2023, in the area of Serebrianske forestry near the city of Kreminna in Luhansk Oblast. He suffered a fatal mine explosion injury during the assault on enemy positions as a result of enemy mortar shelling. He was 22 years old at the time of his death.

Volodymyr was born in Dokuchaievsk, Donetsk Oblast. He attended the local school but had to leave the occupied city with his mother in 2014 and moved to Volnovakha. He completed his education at a school there. In 2020, he obtained a degree in floristry from the Velikoanadolsky Forestry College named after V. Graff. In 2022, he graduated from the Kharkiv National Technical University of Agriculture named after Petro Vasylenko with a bachelor’s degree in Wood Processing and Furniture Technologies and became a furniture technology engineer. He had plans to pursue a master’s degree but decided to defend his homeland instead. While studying, he worked as a waiter and later as a real estate agent. In his free time, he enjoyed playing football. He dreamed of starting a family and raising children.

With the onset of full-scale invasion, Volodymyr, along with his mother, had to find a new refuge due to the occupation of Volnovakha. He went to Kyiv. On January 18, 2023, he joined the ranks of the 12th Special Purpose Brigade of the National Guard “Azov”. After training, he became a senior machine gunner and went to the front lines.

“My only son was always cheerful, hardworking, kind, sensitive, and responsible. He always helped his friends. We were displaced twice. In 2014, Volodymyr couldn’t defend his homeland because he was a minor, and when we lost our home for the second time, he decided to volunteer to defend it. Vova really wanted to return to his native Dokuchaievsk…” – shared Victoria Ponka.

Posthumously, the National Guardsman was awarded the Order “For Courage” III degree.

The young hero was laid to rest at the St. Nicholas Cemetery in Zaporizhzhia.

Volodymyr is survived by his mother, grandmother, grandfather, girlfriend, friends, and comrades.