TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Paul Gray, a U.S. Army Veteran and a Purple Heart recipient from Tyler, was able to take the last train to leave Kyiv to go to Lviv in western Ukraine. He has joined an organization that is training Ukrainians to fight. Paul is at an undisclosed location doing training exercises with the group he volunteers with.

“It’s my whole obligation since living here in Ukraine. These are some of the best people in the world,” said Gray. “They’re the best, as good as any of our friends and allies of America, and I love this country and when this invasion started I considered it my obligation to stand up and defend these people.”

He was interviewed by Fox News on March 1. During which he says the Ukrainian people are fierce patriots of their country.

“This is their 1776. This is their fight of their generation and they’re not going to let this moment pass without fighting into the end, and it’s just extremely inspiring to see this,” says Gray. “A lot of young Ukrainians, they are the first generation of independence in their country. Something their families and people have wanted for centuries. So it’s not something they are obligated to do, but they want to do it.”

Paul’s mother Jan, who lives in Tyler, says he is where he is by God’s design and he is in God’s hands.

“Of course as a mother this is a test of faith that I have very deep. It says be anxious for nothing and that means nothing. So I had to let Paul make his own decision of what he wanted to do,” says Jan Gray, Paul Gray’s mother. She says she is putting all her faith in God.