AMSTERDAM, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The U.S. Department of State confirmed the second American has died in the war in Ukraine. Stephen Zabielski was born in Amsterdam, New York, according to his obituary in The Recorder.
The 53-year-old died Sunday, May 15 while fighting the war in Ukraine in the village of Dorozhniank, the obit reads. It continues, “Steve enjoyed life to the fullest. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, & riding his Harley. Steve will be missed by all who knew and loved him.”
Zabielski graduated from Amsterdam High School and lived in the area until 2018. He most recently was living in Florida. He is survived by his wife, five stepchildren, and a grandchild, among other family. “Rolling Stone” was the first to report Zabielski’s passing, and according to the publication, he was a U.S. Army veteran.
The State Department confirmed his death, adding, “we have been in touch with the family and have provided all possible consular assistance. Out of respect to the family during this difficult time, we have nothing further.” A State Department spokesperson was asked to confirm additional details on Zabielski during a press conference Tuesday afternoon, but did not comment out of respect for the family.
Zabielski is at least the second American to have been killed in combat in Ukraine. In late April, Willy Joseph Cancel, a 22-year-old former Marine from Tennessee, was killed fighting in Ukraine. U.S. officials continue cautioning citizens not to travel to Ukraine due to the active armed conflict.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.