Vasiliy Lomachenko is joining a fight far more serious than the battles he’s faced throughout his remarkable career.

The former three-division champion and two-time Olympics gold medalist posted a picture on his Facebook page Sunday indicating that he’s joined a territorial defense battalion in Ukraine days after Russia invaded the country and as tensions continue to escalate during the crisis. 

Lomachenko can be seen wearing military fatigues and carrying an assault rifle next to Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi mayor Vitaliy Grazhdan. 

A photo caption in Russian translates to "the Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi Battalion of Territorial Defense is formed and armed." reached out to Lomachenko manager Egis Klimas for additional information and comment on Sunday but messages were not returned as this story goes to publication. Lomachenko's longtime manager did however retweet a post around Lomachenko’s development. 

Earlier in the week, the 34-year-old Lomachenko was in Greece as the Russian invasion started Thursday morning but he soon returned back to his home country.

Lomachenko joins Hall of Fame heavyweight champions and brothers Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko as the latest marquee Ukrainian boxers to provide support against Russia’s aggression. 

Vitali is currently the mayor of Kyiv, the capital city of Ukraine with a population of nearly 2.8 million people. 

“We are hunting (Russian troops), and it will be much easier if nobody is on the street,” Vitali said Sunday in an interview with The Associated Press.

“I just talked to the president (Volodymyr Zelenskyy). Everybody is not feeling so well.

"We show our character, our knowledge, our values.

“To be honest, we don’t have 100% control.

"We built this territorial defense (system) in a short amount of time — but these are patriotic people.

“Right now, the most important question is to defend our country.

“We are at the border of a humanitarian catastrophe. Right now, we have electricity, right now we have water and heating in our houses. But the infrastructure is destroyed to deliver the food and medication.”

“That’s why the message for everyone is support Ukraine together ... we are strong. Every Ukrainian is proud to be independent, proud to be Ukrainian, and we are proud to have our own country.

In recent weeks, Lomachenko (16-2, 11 KOs) has been one of the leading candidates to face IBF, WBO, WBA, and WBC Franchise champion George Kambosos Jr. for a potential fight this summer. 

Lomachenko last fought in December and scored a unanimous decision victory against Richard Commey at the Madison Square Garden in New York. 

Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, via email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at] or on