Ukrainian Americans gathered Wednesday in Albuquerque for a celebration of Ukraine’s Independence Day. Los Alamos Living Treasure Stephanie Sydoria, behind sign and 5th from right, delivered the keynote address. Courtesy photo
Ukrainian Americans of New Mexico celebrated both the 27th and the 100th anniversaries of the declarations of Ukrainian independence by gathering Aug. 26 at the Albuquerque Civic Plaza to read aloud the official proclamation issued by Mayor Tim Keller.
Father Artur Bubnevych of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Byzantine Catholic Church blessed the participants and led the prayers of thanks and in remembrance of fallen heroes in the continued fight for Ukraine’s freedom.
After the initial welcome by organizing committee member Nataliya Edelman, the keynote address was delivered by a long time resident officially recognized as a Los Alamos “living treasure,” Stephanie Sydoriak, who spoke about how her family, arriving in the U.S. before World War I, had not only preserved Ukrainian traditions, customs and language throughout the decades, but had successfully shared it with the indigenous and traditional peoples of New Mexico. She said she had the good fortune to visit Ukraine in 1990 and to join in to joyfully welcome the new spirit of independence that was stirring strongly.
Organizers of the event also shared warm greetings of support received from the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, which represents 1.4 million Ukrainian Canadians. The formal portion of the event was attended by over 50 participants ranging in age from 3 to 90, including Ukrainian New Mexicans who have resided here since the 1940s as well as those who have recently arrived.
Following the Civic Center Plaza portion of the event, the assembled continued the festivities at a neighborhood park and began planning for the next event set for Oct. 2. Information is available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.