Evgenia Emerald could hear the unmistakable buzz of a drone circling lazily overhead as she lay on the ground perfectly still, buried in the deep brush of an undisclosed part of Ukraine. She quietly whispered to the reporter by her side, “It’s trying to find us.” 

Emerald, as her friends call her, knows all too well what will come next if it finds her; incoming artillery. It’s happened many times before to this seasoned though perhaps unlikely, sniper.

Newsy’s Jason Bellini met with Emerald in her blacked-out Kyiv apartment with no electricity to learn the story of Ukraine’s “lady death.” It’s a fascinating tale of lives lost, loves found, and new life yet to be. Screenshot from YouTube and Newsy.

It seems she was born to do this. As a young girl, she enjoyed dressing up in kid-sized Army uniforms, and her dad bought her a toy gun almost as big as she was.

Emerald as a little girl ready for action. Screenshot from YouTube and Newsy.

She most certainly was comfortable handling weapons as she grew up.