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Brazilian model that joined Ukrainian forces killed in Russian missile strike 

Former model Thalita de Valle, 39, joined Ukraine’s cause three weeks ago as an elite sniper

July 6, 2022 2:05pm

Updated: July 6, 2022 2:59pm

A Brazilian model that joined the Ukrainian forces to fight against Russia was killed during an airstrike, according to her relatives. 

Former model Thalita de Valle, 39, joined Ukraine’s cause three weeks ago as an elite sniper. However, she died during a Russian missile strike in Kharkiv on June 30. Because of the explosions, Thalita became trapped in a bunker amid Russian shelling. 

Former Brazilian army fighter Douglas Burigo, 40, was on her way to evacuate the model from a bunker and take her to safety but was also killed during the attack. 

Thalita died of asphyxiation while waiting to be rescued inside the flaming bunker, according to the Daily Mail

The Sao Paulo model had posted videos of her time in Ukraine on her YouTube channel, where she had also documented her previous experience fighting against ISIS in Iraq. 

During her time in Iraq, Thalita trained as a sniper with the Peshmergas in the independent Kurdistan region. Her family said she was working with a writer on a book about her war experiences.

In Ukraine, the former model continued her work as a sniper and provided cover to Ukrainian forces fighting against advancing Russian forces. She had survived a previous bombing in Kyiv. 

“Thalita has always been involved in humanitarian missions with the foreign legion of some country or here in Brazil,” her brother, Theo Rodrigo Viera, said. “She was always moved by the feeling of saving animals and humans. My sister was always peaceful, a genuine progressive. Guns are part of a context, war, but she saved lives, she saved animals.”