Digital Media Center
Bryant-Denny Stadium, Gate 61
920 Paul Bryant Drive
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0370
(800) 654-4262

© 2024 Alabama Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
WUAL is an auxiliary transmitter as we upgrade the main transmitter.
Alabama Shakespeare Festival Enter for Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

What’s next for Tuscaloosa man freed by Russia

Alex Drueke, ecently released from three months of Russian captivity, pauses during an interview at home in Tuscaloosa, Ala., on Friday, Sept. 30, 2022. Drueke and fellow Alabamian Andy Huynh were captured after traveling to Ukraine to help in the fight against Russian invaders. (AP Photo/Jay Reeves)
Jay Reeves/AP
/
AP
Alex Drueke, ecently released from three months of Russian captivity, pauses during an interview at home in Tuscaloosa, Ala., on Friday, Sept. 30, 2022. Drueke and fellow Alabamian Andy Huynh were captured after traveling to Ukraine to help in the fight against Russian invaders. (AP Photo/Jay Reeves)

A Tuscaloosa man captured by the Russians during the war with Ukraine says he’s probably done with fighting on the front line. Alex Drueke was released by Russian separatists last month. He sat down to talk with APR news about his time as a P-O-W. Drueke says he prayed for death before he realized he was finally coming home.

“The torture was terrible,” said Drueke. “The beatings were awful. All that kind of stuff. But, really the boredom, the isolation, is what really got to us. Just trying to find ways to keep our minds active, was really important.”

Drueke is referring to fellow P-O-W Andy Huyh of Alabama. They were both captured during the ongoing war between Vladimir Putin and Ukraine. The prisoners were released by Russian separatists last month. He sat down with APR news to talk about his time as a P-O-W.

“I think I’m done actively fighting on the front line. But, I still love Ukraine…I still want to support Ukraine. I want others to keep up their support of Ukraine.”

Drueke was welcomed back to Tuscaloosa by an official resolution issued by the City Council.

News from Alabama Public Radio is a public service in association with the University of Alabama. We depend on your help to keep our programming on the air and online. Please consider supporting the news you rely on with a donation today. Every contribution, no matter the size, propels our vital coverage. Thank you.