NewsLocal News


Help from the Heartland: Nebraska and Iowa donate body armor to Ukraine

Posted at 10:42 PM, Mar 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-30 23:42:45-04

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — As the conflict continues in Ukraine, help is on the way from the heartland.

"Working in conjunction with the state of Iowa, we have worked to collect protective equipment for folks in Ukraine," said Governor Pete Ricketts.

Ricketts announced Wednesday both Nebraska and Iowa are responding to Ukraine's call for global support.

"We've been able to collect 550 pieces of protective equipment including 321 body armor vests and 69 helmets," he said.

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds made a similar announcement.

"Last week we announced that the state would be donating 146 protective helmets and 714 ballistic vests to aid Ukraine in its defense against Russian forces," said Reynolds.

The states teamed up to donate old, but still useful equipment to Ukrainians fighting Russian forces.

"The armor can no longer be used in the United States, but they're very serviceable and still functional to make a huge difference in what's going on in Ukraine," said Captain Jason Scott of the Nebraska State Patrol.

State leaders called the gesture small, yet significant. They want to support any effort to bring the current conflict to an end.

Though they admit when that end should come is still uncertain.

"I would hope that this conflict can be brought to an end quickly," said Ricketts. "If this turns into something that is going to be a longer-term effort we'd be looking to pool with other states as well," he said.

Reynolds said there are strong connections between Ukraine and the Heartland. Iowa has a sister-state relationship with Cherkasy, a providence in the central part of the country.

According to Reynolds, the Ukrainian city specifically requested the armor that in normal circumstances, would be destroyed.

Download our apps today for all of our latest coverage.

Get the latest news and weather delivered straight to your inbox.