A British volunteer has been killed in action while fighting in Ukraine, his brother has said.
Sam Newey left for Ukraine at the start of the Russian invasion and fought on several front lines during his service in the war-torn country.
The 22-year-old was killed in action in eastern Ukraine yesterday, his brother Dan Newey said as he paid tribute, calling him a “an exceptional man and a good soldier”.
“I can’t express how broken I feel,” Dan wrote. “I also can’t stress how proud I am of my little brother.
Sam – who had no prior military experience – had been a member of an international volunteer group known as the Dark Angels.
Sam Newey (pictured) had left for Ukraine at the start of the Russian invasion and had fought on several front lines during his service in the war-torn country.
Sam’s brother Dan Newey (pictured together) paid tribute to the 22-year-old, calling him “an outstanding man and a fine soldier”.
After studying psychology at the University of Birmingham, Sam made the decision to fight in Ukraine as Vladimir Putin’s men marched on the country in February 2022.
Paying tribute to his brother, Dan wrote: “He had just turned 21 when he decided to answer the call and go to Ukraine to fight against Russian imperialism.
“Sam, you gave your life for people you never knew and you acted with courage, morality and honor.
“Not only are you my little brother, but you are an exceptional man, a good soldier and one of the bravest people I have ever had the privilege of knowing. Thank you so much for being part of my life for these 22 years. I still love you my brother.’
As the news broke, tributes poured in for Sam on social media hailing him as a “hero”.
Family friend Daniel Burke had previously advised Sam to train as a doctor before enlisting to fight in Ukraine. He joined Burke and his group of foreign volunteers, the Dark Angels.
The group then disbanded and Sam headed east to work with Ukrainian GUR military intelligence.
Fears are also growing for Burke, who disappeared in action while in the city of Zaporizhzhia in southeastern Ukraine, close to the front lines of the current Ukrainian counter-offensive.
Burke’s family also fear that the ex-paratrooper was also killed.
Sam Newey is pictured outside Westminster Magistrates’ Court in February 2020, where he and his father are appealing charges under the Terrorism Act for sending money to his brother in Syria .
In 2020, Sam and his father Paul were charged with terrorism offenses after they were accused of supporting Kurdish fighters in Syria when they sent money to Dan while he was fighting Isis in Syria.
Dan, a former paratrooper, had fought in the People’s Protection Units (YPG) – a Syrian Kurdish group – between late 2017 and June 2018 and his family had sent him money to “help him”.
The YPG are the main component of the Syrian Democratic Forces – a Western ally against IS. But states like Turkey consider the group a terrorist organization.
Charges against Sam and his father Paul were dropped by the Crown Prosecution Service in July 2020, and no further action was taken at the time.
The 22-year-old was killed in action in eastern Ukraine yesterday, his brother Dan Newey said as he paid tribute.
Sam is just the latest Briton to be killed fighting for Ukraine. Many of those killed in the country fought to join some of the country’s fiercest battles against Russia.
Previous deaths include Jay Morais, a 52-year-old man from Bristol who took part in street fighting in Severodonetsk last summer before joining the Battle of Bakhmut.
Simon Lingard, 38, who had served in British special forces, was killed in Ukraine in November last year. The father-of-two, who served several tours in Afghanistan with the British Army, died “fighting for what he believed in”, his family said at the time.
Jordan Gatley, 24, was shot in the head on June 10 in Severodonetsk, eastern Ukraine, after handing in his summons to the British army.
A week before his death, Gatley had taught the volunteers he was fighting alongside how to use an anti-tank weapon.
He was walking down the stairs of an apartment building when he was shot by a Russian sniper.