MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WPDE) — The scene of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians fleeing the country hits close to home for the co-founder and CEO of Tidal Creek Brewhouse in Myrtle Beach, so he’s selling a beer and donating 50% of the proceeds to Ukrainian relief.
“We had a dark lager, which is a European-type beer, that we actually had in tank, so we’ve repurposed that and called it ‘Slava Ukrani,’” Adrian Sawczuk said, which means ‘Glory to Ukraine,’ in English.
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We’ll be giving 50 percent of the proceeds to the Ukraine relief funds," he said.
Giving glory to the country is a lot more personal for Sawczuck, though.
“Both of my parents came from Ukraine, they actually immigrated during World War II. So very similar to the immigration that’s happening now with refugees, both my parents were refugees," Sawczuck said.
He said they moved from one country to another, before ending up in New York.
They lived this life of hiding underneath beds when they were being bombed and leaving a country with two suitcases holding all their worldly possessions. I grew up hearing those stories, and learning about the horrors they went through," he said.
The glory of his generational patriotism runs even deeper, for both his ancestors and home country. He joined ROTC, and was stationed in Germany from 1991 to 1993, right after Ukraine gained its independence.
“Our mission there was to defend against the Soviet threat, and defend Europe against them," he explained.
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Those experiences became fresh after Russia’s invasion.
“It's like the Cold War is back,” he said. “And it may not stay that cold, unfortunately," he said.
Instead of pain, though, he’s appreciative for the Grand Strands’ support to give ‘Glory to Ukraine.’
“In addition, we do what’s called a round-up program, so when you close out your check, you can round it up to the nearest dollar and we collect those monies and will be giving that to the Ukrainian relief fund,” he said.
It feels great that we can do something, and we’re in a position to do that," he said.
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He said the brewhouse is planning a Ukrainian food day, to celebrate the country’s culture and food.