The famous Ukrainian hero who told Russian officers to 'go f**k yourself' has returned home and been awarded a medal for his services.
Roman Hrybov, was serving as a border guard on Snake Island when a Russian warship approached the island and asked for the guards to surrender.
Hrybov has since returned home, where he was presented with an award for the 'Merits To Cherkasy Region' by the region’s governor, Igor Taburets.
When presenting the medal, Taburets said: “The Cherkasy resident, together with his brothers, demonstrated to the whole world the firmness and strength of the Ukrainian spirit, our indestructibility.”
The defiance in Hrybov's response back to the Russian soldiers stood as a symbol of resistance for all of Ukraine and it was even immortalised into a postal stamp to commemorate the moment.
The recordings of the radio exchange, which took place just days after the Russian invasion of Ukraine began, went viral and was shared across various social media.
The clip was verified by Ukrainian officials soon after, with Russian soldiers approaching the island, and saying: “This is a military warship. This is a Russian military warship.
"I suggest you lay down your weapons and surrender to avoid bloodshed and needless casualties. Otherwise, you will be bombed.”
The phrase 'Russian warship, go f**k yourself' became a rallying cry for Ukraine as they looked to undermine Russia’s invasion attempts, with the slogan seen on billboards and traffic signs across the country.
The 13 border guards situated on the island were believed to have been killed after refusing to surrender, with President Zelenskyy saying they would be posthumously awarded the title of ‘Hero of Ukraine’.
Reports later confirmed that they had instead been captured, with the defenders now returned to Ukraine as part of a prisoner exchange.
Russia agreed to exchange 19 of the servicemen for 11 Russian soldiers who had been rescued from a sunken ship near Odessa.
In an interview with Russian journalists, Zelenskyy also expressed his gratitude to those who died.
He said: “All those who were taken prisoner were exchanged. Russia came up with this proposal. We exchanged them without hesitation … Those who died, they are heroes.”Featured Image Credit: Twitter/Defence Of Ukraine. Andrey Nekrasov / Alamy