A family of Ukrainian refugees played Sir Rod Stewart’s music in the house every day after the singing legend rescued them from war-torn Ukraine.
Grateful dad Rostyslav Kurtiak, 49, told how his family owed the rocker their lives after he found them a home in a Berkshire town green.
Rostyslav’s family of seven now live in a £500,000 three-storey terraced house and the singer has promised to pay their rent and bills for at least a year.
Holding his two-year-old son Dymtro in his arms, he told MailOnline: ‘Sir Rod is a very big man. He saved my family from danger.
‘Now my children are safe and learn at school like normal children.’
The family are settling into their four-bedroom home in Bracknell, Berks after moving in over the summer.
A family of Ukrainian refugees have told how they played Sir Rod Stewart’s music in the house every day after the singing legend rescued them from war-torn Ukraine. Pictured: Sir Rod Stewart with family who consider him a ‘hero’
Grateful dad Rostyslav Kurtiak, 49, told how his family owed their lives to the rocker after he found them a home in a Berkshire town green
Rostyslav’s family of seven now live in a £500,000 three-storey terraced house and the singer has promised to pay their rent and bills for at least a year
Sir Rod, 77, and wife Penny, 51, stepped in after hearing about the plight of Rostyslav, wife Olena and children Taras, 17, Kostya, 16, Roman, 13, Mariia, 10, and Dymtro.
The family, who do not speak English, found themselves homeless and penniless after fleeing their homeland.
The singer had already teamed up with family members to rescue refugees after organizing three trucks to take 16 refugees back to safety in Berlin.
Rostyslav hailed Sir Rod as ‘a great hero’ and said that in tribute he plays his music around the clock.
He said: ‘Of course I love his music. I’ve always liked it, but now I’m his biggest fan.
‘I play his music every day, every day! My favorite is sailing. I love the version he does with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
‘My children also love his songs. We play his music on You Tube. He is a very great singer and a very great man.’
Rostyslav also likes Rhythm of My Heart – which Sir Rod said he wrote about the Vietnam War, but said he would dedicate to Ukrainians on his upcoming tour.
Sir Rod, 77, and wife Penny, 51, stepped in after hearing about the plight of Rostyslav, wife Olena and children Taras, 17, Kostya, 16, Roman, 13, Mariia, 10, and Dymtro
Singer-songwriter Rod Stewart (pictured) has set up a Ukrainian family of seven and promised to pay their rent and bills for a year
The family home was built in 2005 and has one bedroom on the top floor with an en-suite bathroom.
There is a large family kitchen downstairs and an enclosed garden to the rear.
Rostyslav said: ‘When we first moved in we didn’t know about Sir Rod.
‘When we found out and it was such a shock. He came to visit us last week.
‘It was a big surprise. He had tea and ate sweets and we went to the garden.’
Rostyslav said he had previously worked in the legal profession as well as an electrician and in computers and photography.
The father, who said he hopes to find work once he has settled in and improves his language skills, added of Sir Rod: ‘He has done so much for our country to save children every day.
‘Winter is coming and it will be a very difficult time for my people.’
Sir Rod said he wanted to use his ‘power’ as a knight to help others.
He told the Daily Mirror about the moment he met the family for the first time.
He said: ‘I walked in the door and they all came running down the stairs, all beautifully dressed in Ukrainian national dress.
‘It was so nice that they all made that effort. They made me a cup of tea and we had lots of biscuits and chocolate, although the baby kept nibbling on all mine. It was really wonderful.’
Rostyslav said he had previously worked in the legal profession as well as an electrician and in computers and photography
Rescue workers inspect a building destroyed by Russian drone strikes as they continue their field work in Kiev on October 18
He added of the visit: ‘I think they had been briefed before they met me about who I was – and they certainly know who I am now as I left them around 500 CDs.’
Neighbors spoke of their surprise after hearing the family owed their new home to the singer.
One said: ‘We knew they lived there but had no idea who was behind it. We didn’t know who had set them up.
‘They keep to themselves. We see them walking their children to school. The parents do not speak English.
‘The house had been empty for a while. The people who owned it struggled to sell it and they put it on the rental market.
“It had been empty for quite a long time. It’s good that he has come along, and there are people living in there, otherwise it would be uninhabited’.
Another female neighbor said; ‘It’s so nice to do.
‘It’s great to have your house paid off and not have to worry about your gas and electricity bills, especially now that you have five kids. It’s a start for them.
‘It’s nice to see someone famous doing something good with their money.’
Neighbors said the family ‘seems friendly enough. The children play out here on bicycles. Bracknell is a lovely place to live. It’s a new city. There are lots of schools, good facilities and there are some really nice places around here’
Russia said on Tuesday that a ‘technical error’ likely caused a military plane to crash into an apartment block in Yeysk, near Ukraine
The woman added of the family: ‘They seem friendly enough. The children play out here on bicycles. Bracknell is a lovely place to live. It’s a new city. There are lots of schools, good facilities and there are some really nice places around here.
‘There are lots of green areas around and parks. Windsor is just up the road so you’re not far from Royalty.’
A woman who lives next door said: ‘Unfortunately we haven’t seen Sir Rod. I’m a fan of him.
‘They moved in the summer over a month or so. It was a gradual move. There was a van that kept coming and dropping bits off here and there.
‘They have done well. Very good. They don’t have a car, so you see them walking around. The schools are some distance away.
A factory lies in ruins after being destroyed during fighting between Ukrainian and Russian occupation forces on October 18
‘It would take you about 20 minutes to walk to the city centre.
‘I spoke to them a few weeks ago to ask if they wanted our two bar stools as we were buying new ones and didn’t know what their furniture situation was.
‘He said the little one was a bit too young and he was worried he might hurt himself.
‘I had to use the translator on his phone to communicate. I spoke on the phone and it was translated.’
Another neighbor added: ‘They’ve been here two or three months. I always say hello to them. The father is always kind.
“I haven’t seen Rod Stewart, but it’s a really nice thing to have done.”