For Tatiana Dacko, singing during a "sister city" proclamation between Syracuse and the Ukrainian city Irpin was an honor.

"We appreciate the support of Syracuse and all of the American nation, too," said Dacko, who has loved ones in Ukraine.

For her, like many others, the sister city designation is deeply personal. She's thankful her mother got out of the war-torn country safely.

What You Need To Know

  • The mayor of a city in Ukraine spent Friday in Syracuse

  • He personally organized and fought to protect the city of Irpin last year, and was awarded for his actions

  • Syracuse partnered with Irpin to announce a sister city proclamation

"My husband, who is an American citizen, who was born in Syracuse, he went over to Poland and met her on the border. She was able to make it to the Polish border, and he brought her here," Dacko said.

"The city of Syracuse looks to support the people of Irpin through their recovery, and to seek opportunities for cultural exchanges in collaboration on economic development and shared prosperity," Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said.

Irpin was one of the first Ukrainian cities to be destroyed – and liberated. Its mayor, Oleksandr Markushyn, who was awarded for his efforts in defending the city, spoke with help from a translator.

"Only together, after we unite, we can stop the fighting and we can rebuild our beautiful city of Irpin and our beautiful communities," he said. "Many people, they're struggling, and events like this, it shows that the support is real," Dacko said. "It comes from hearts of American people, and we take it with a grateful heart."

Dacko asked people to pray for Ukraine.

Other cities across New York state have announced sister city proclamations with areas in Ukraine, including Albany and Buffalo.