He was not the first to die this century, west of the border of his Motherland in some scrub land or small town.
He was, however, the first to die on the 24th February 2022 and perhaps someone had told him his duty was to free a land from a Nazis clique in Kyiv.
Maybe he believed it.
Maybe he didn’t want to let his unit down, seem weak.
More likely he was scared of his sergeant and his captain, loud bullying men.
And anyway the only hope he had had was to do as ordered and keep sharp.
Hope ran out though.
He’ll on his way back home, hopefully soon.
For relatives and friends to surrender the pieces to Mother Earth.
He did not have the consolation of knowing he was fighting on.