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22-Year-Old Boxing Champion Maksym Galinichev Dies While Defending Ukraine Against Russia: 'Hero'

People 3/29/2023 Jason Hahn

Galinichev's death was announced on Twitter by Anton Gerashchenko, an adviser to Ukraine's Minister of Internal Affairs

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Maksym Galinichev, a promising 22-year-old boxer from Ukraine, died while fighting against Russian forces earlier this month.

Galinichev's death was announced on Twitter by Anton Gerashchenko, an adviser to Ukraine's Minister of Internal Affairs.

"Maksym Galinichev, 22, European youth boxing champion, died defending Ukraine in Luhansk region," Gerashchenko wrote. "Maksym enlisted as a volunteer and came back to the frontlines twice after being wounded and recovering."

"Eternal memory to Hero," he added.

The post also included a picture showing Galinichev dirty with soil, wearing military gear, and surrounded by supplies.

According to Bleacher Report, Galinichev won gold at the 2017 European Youth Championships and a silver medal at the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics.

Related:23-Year-Old Boxer Hugo Santillán Dies After Sustaining Injuries in Fight

Anton Gerashchenko /Twitter © Provided by People Anton Gerashchenko /Twitter

He declined to compete in the European Championships after placing second among boxers under the age of 22 in 2021.

Instead, he enlisted as a volunteer in the Ukrainian military last year after the Russian invasion began in February 2022.

Related:18-Year-Old Boxer Jeanette Zacarias Zapata Dies After Sustaining Head Injuries in Fight Knockout

Many on social media paid tribute to Galinichev after news of his death.

"Maksym, you paid the ultimate sacrifice defending Ukraine," wrote on Twitter user. "You will never be forgotten. May your gentle soul Rest in Eternal Peace. Rest easy hero. My thoughts are with your family."

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Added another: "I am so sorry about this brave young man. He fought bravely for his country. Rest in peace."

Russia started a war in Ukraine with a large-scale invasion on Feb. 24, 2022.

The Russian attack on Ukraine is an evolving story, with information changing quickly. Follow PEOPLE's complete coverage of the war here, including stories from citizens on the ground and ways to help.

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