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Ina Garten Shared a Beautiful Tribute to Her Inspirational Grandmother Forced to Flee Ukraine

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is opening people’s eyes to how many public figures, friends and co-workers are tied to the country. Ina Garten is the latest celebrity to share her moving personal story about her grandmother and why she feels such an emotional connection to the current situation.

Posting a black-and-white family photo (with a baby Ina) on Instagram, the Barefoot Contessa spoke about her grandmother’s journey to the United States and why she is empathetic to the current plight of its citizens now. “My grandmother (left in the photo) came from Odessa in the early 1900’s to escape the dreadful pogroms [Russian anti-Jewish riots] and made a wonderful life for all of us in America. My heart goes out to everyone who is forced to fight for or flee their homeland because of a horrific war.” she wrote.

She reminisced about her grandmother and revealed that they shared many of the same talents. “Btw she loved to cook and entertain friends; people who knew her say I am just like her,” Garten added. “She also brought me that off-the-shoulder dress from Paris, starting my life-long love for that beautiful city. #stopthewar.” The cyclical nature of history is heartbreaking and it’s why cherished memories are so important during a devastating time like this — Ukraine has suffered many times over, but they’ve always found the spirit to rebuild in their homeland or a new country.

Garten’s fans dropped into the comments to offer their personal stories about Ukraine and their love for the people and its culture. “My grandmother came from outside Odessa, and my grandfather from Poltava, Ukraine,” one user wrote. “My love of family, good food, and opening my home to those I love… priceless gifts from my Ukrainian family.” Another follower chimed in with the realities of war, “I’m a refugee here in the US. My heart goes out to all who suffer because of war. The trauma of war stays with you for life.” The personal stories are both tough and uplifting to read, but Garten’s post offered a comforting place for her fans to gather.

Before you go, check out these other impressive Ina Garten recipes.

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