Human Interest Ukrainian 'Hero of the Night,' 11, Who Walked Out of War Alone Reunites with His Mom "The family is together again," the police said on social media. "They lost everything again, but this time the war didn't take anyone away from them. They are together and that's all that matters" By Virginia Chamlee Virginia Chamlee Politics Writer - PEOPLE People Editorial Guidelines Published on March 17, 2022 03:57 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Trending Videos 11-Year-Old Ukrainian Boy Reunited With Family After Making His Way to Slovakia Alone. Photo: Slovak Police Force Facebook A Ukrainian boy who successfully crossed the border into Slovakia by himself amid Russia's invasion of his home country has reunited with his mom and grandma, according to authorities. The official Facebook page for the Slovakian police this week shared photos of Hassan, the 11-year-old boy, and his siblings with their mom — along with more information about the reunion. As a translation of the post detailed, the family's journey was complicated, with the three sisters traveling from their home in the southeast of Ukraine to Bratislava, Slovakia, to meet their older brother and ensure that Hassan would also be able to enter the country. When it was determined that Hassan could cross the border, he made the journey alone, with his mother, Julia Pisecka, staying behind to take care of her own, ailing, mom. "Hassan spent more than a day on the train," the police wrote on Facebook. "He had his brother's number written on his hand." Finally, he made it, as earlier reports have detailed, and was soon hailed a "hero of the night" after successfully crossing the border into Slovakia by himself, CNN reported. (As the police noted on Facebook, the young boy's journey went viral via various media outlets and was even shared by celebrities including Khloé Kardashian.) 11-Year-Old Ukrainian Boy Becomes 'Hero of the Night' After Making His Way to Slovakia Alone 11-Year-Old Ukrainian Boy Reunited With Family After Making His Way to Slovakia Alone. Slovak Police Force Facebook "He came all alone because his parents had to stay in Ukraine," the Slovak Ministry of Interior separately posted on Facebook, according to CNN. "Volunteers took care of him, took him to a warm place and gave him food and drink." Hassan was then picked up by relatives and joined his siblings so the group could "start from scratch," that Facebook post said. Meanwhile, the children's mother ultimately decided to make her own escape with the grandmother, due to the continued threat of Russian bombing. Along with their small dog, the two women took "a very difficult journey on the evacuation train," finally re-joining the children on Monday, authorities said. 11-Year-Old Ukrainian Boy Reunited With Family After Making His Way to Slovakia Alone. Slovak Police Force Facebook Now, they're all back together — with the reunion sparking hope for the future while also dredging up painful memories. The Slovakian police wrote on social media this week that this "wasn't the first time Hassan's family ran away from war," as they came to Ukraine after fleeing Syria years ago. During that war, their father "didn't make it." "The family is together again," the police wrote on Facebook. "They lost everything again, but this time the war didn't take anyone away from them. They are together and that's all that matters." Hassan had opened up about his harrowing journey during a virtual interview with Good Morning Britain from Bratislava last week. Sitting beside his four older siblings — who translated for him — he reflected on the "difficult" journey and being back with his loved ones. Hassan's sister, meanwhile, expressed her concerns about her brother's ordeal, saying in the morning broadcast that she was worried about the trek, given that he is the youngest of the five. "I was very, very worried ... and it was surprising," she said of reuniting with Hassan. Looking ahead, Hassan also spoke about the future and what comes next. "He said the most important [thing] is to be in the place where [his family is]," Hassan's sister said. "He's not thinking about the future," she continued of her younger brother. "He just wants to stay with us." In a video posted by authorities in Slovakia earlier this month, the kids' mother, Julia Pisecka, expressed her gratitude for everyone who tended to her son's needs while he made the solo journey and she shed some light on why she was waiting to leave, the BBC reported. "Next to my town is a power plant that the Russians are shelling," Pisecka, a widow, reportedly said. "I couldn't leave my mum — she can't move by herself — so I sent my son to Slovakia." Ukrainian 'Hero of the Night,' 11, Reunites with Siblings After Crossing Slovakian Border Alone Meanwhile, Russia's attack on Ukraine continues after their forces launched a large-scale invasion on Feb. 24 — the first major land conflict in Europe in decades. Details of the fighting change by the day, but hundreds of civilians have already been reported dead or wounded, including children. Millions of Ukrainians have also fled, the United Nations says. The invasion, ordered by Russian President Vladimir Putin, has drawn condemnation around the world and increasingly severe economic sanctions against Russia. With NATO forces massing in the region around Ukraine, various countries have also pledged aid or military support to the resistance. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for peace talks — so far unsuccessful — while urging his country to fight back. "Nobody is going to break us, we're strong, we're Ukrainians," he told the European Union in a speech in the early days of the fighting, adding, "Life will win over death. And light will win over darkness." The Russian attack on Ukraine is an evolving story, with information changing quickly. Follow PEOPLE's complete coverage of the war here, including stories from citizens on the ground and ways to help.