The war between Russia and Ukraine, which began in 2014 but ramped up in February 2022 as Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, has claimed yet another life. 21-year-old Counter-Strike: Global Offensive pro Ostap “0ni” Onistrat was reportedly killed in action defending his home country of Ukraine.
0ni was a rising CSGO player. According to reports from Reuters and Sportskeeda, his last recorded tournament was the Zuel Championship 2021 with the Ukrainian esports team Libertatem, which finished second in the competition overall. Unfortunately, his career was cut short this month after participating in the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, an imperialist war that, according to the most recent updates on Reuters, has at this point taken more than 62,000 lives and displaced roughly 17 million people.
The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine tweeted the news of 0ni’s death on June 5. He was reportedly killed on June 3 by enemy shrapnel on the front line of Vuhledar in the Donetsk region, which has seen intense fighting for the past several months as Ukrainian forces recapture the territory, according to CNN.
“Another Ukrainian father has lost his son,” the ministry said. “Ukraine has lost her son. The loss is irreparable. Victory is inevitable. We all owe it to Ostap.”
Sergey “LMBT” Bezhanov, CSGO coach for the Ukrainian team Monte Esports, called 0ni a hero for protecting Ukraine and everyone who lives there.
According to a report from FirstSportz, 0ni’s father Andriy Onistrat wrote a heartfelt message reminiscing about his son and the tragedy of the loss.
“Sorting through Ostap’s things,” Onistrat wrote. “Many different sensations. It hurts. I bought him many things. He asked me about some things. These are all memories. Now they are heavy and impossible to lift.”
The war between the two Eastern European countries has been especially devastating for Ukraine. According to Al Jazeera, it’ll cost some $411 billion over the next 10 years to recover and rebuild after Russia’s catastrophic and violent invasion. And, of course, no price can be put on the lives tragically lost.