War in Ukraine: a Quebecer impatient to bring his spouse to the country

A Quebecer whose Ukrainian wife managed to flee the country under the bombardments on Friday hopes to be able to bring her to the country as soon as possible.

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Éric Mainguy confided “to get better” when the Newspaper contacted him Friday morning. In the previous hours, Katerina, his spouse whom he married on January 22, confirmed to him that she had succeeded in crossing the Moldovan border from Chornomorsk, a small coastal town located near Odessa.

The 36-year-old woman had woken up to the sound of bombs in the previous hours.

“This is where the concern went up a notch,” says Éric Mainguy. “It’s a small village, quite poor, I wanted to reassure them by saying that there was nothing strategic around, that they wouldn’t bomb a small square, but yesterday they were woken up because the windows of the house were shaking,” says the man from Quebec.

Éric Mainguy joint Ukraine

Courtesy picture

It was chance that put Katerina on the path of this 46-year-old entrepreneur somewhere in 2020. Star Wars fans, the two met on a Facebook group dedicated to the popular saga. One thing leading to another, movie jokes turned into more serious discussions.

“We started talking about our countries, our lives, our families. Then something developed, we were chatting every day when we decided to call each other on Facetime,” he recalls.

This is where the magic happened.

“It clicked. We looked at each other through the screen, we had the little uncomfortable silences, the little smiles, we felt that something was happening.

Determined to see what life has to offer them, Éric Mainguy and Katerina plan a trip that will have taken a year to materialize, pandemic obliges. But since nothing can prevent a heart from loving, in August 2021, in Montenegro, it was the confirmation of the feelings developed in the year that had just passed, even from 7000 kilometers away.

“Everything was clear there, except that I ‘choked’ to ask her to marry there,” laughs Mr. Mainguy, who finally recovered a few weeks after the trip.

The lovebirds finally united in Ukraine six months later, on January 22. Éric Mainguy returned to the country, alone, on February 17, wishing to succeed in obtaining the visas of his wife and her daughter, before being taken aback by the Russian invasion.

“Let’s say that for the past few days, she has been really looking forward to arriving, to releasing the stress, the fear,” says Mr. Mainguy, who hopes that the dramatic situation can speed things up for his wife and her daughter, 10 years old.

“They are still in the void. We don’t know yet about the visas, they haven’t taken much with them, they only have a friend who has confirmed that she has an apartment in Moldova, we don’t know how long they will stay there. , explains the man.

The latter therefore hopes that Canada’s desire to welcome Ukrainian refugees will quickly result in the progress of the file of those he loves. Contacts have already been made with the office of his MP, Bloc Québécois Caroline Desbiens.

“As soon as we have a file number, we will contact the minister’s office to ensure that the file is a priority,” confirms Julien Coulombe-Bonnafous, press officer for the caucus of the Bloc Québécois.

“We are waiting for the details with the immigration lawyer who is helping me with the file. As soon as we have confirmation, we bring them in, ”impatient the one who is eager to start his new life. “Our family life is about to begin. I’ve always wanted that.”


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