The Gutwrenching Reason CNN Anchor Erin Burnett Broke Down On Air

As the war in Ukraine rages on, seemingly with no end in sight, more people are killed, injured, and traumatized by the day. Since Russia invaded the country, the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights claims that as of March 15, there had been "1,834 civilian casualties in the country: 691 killed and 1,143 injured." The confirmed deaths include 135 men, 99 women, 18 children, and an additional "30 children and 409 adults whose sex is yet unknown."

However, they warn that "the actual figures are considerably higher." The Washington Post notes that it's impossible to calculate the exact number due to the lack of available verifiable data, the level of misinformation being distributed, and the differing accounts from both sides of the battle. Either way, the situation is a human rights atrocity. The Council for Foreign Relations predicts that the conflict could lead to more than "seven million refugees" and become Europe's worst humanitarian crisis since the Balkan wars in the early-to-mid 1990s.

Ukraine is located over 5,600 miles away from the United States, per Travel Math, but that doesn't mean the war's resulting tragedy and heartbreak isn't hitting home. Even hardened newscasters are struggling at times to report on the devastating events. CNN anchor Erin Burnett recently broke down on-air. Here's the gut-wrenching reason why.

Erin Burnett can't hold back the tears

Erin Burnett could not hold back her tears while interviewing a Ukrainian victim of the war, People reported. Serhiy Perebyinis had discovered that his wife and two children had been killed via a tweet. "I saw a photo on Twitter, and I recognized my children," the father told Burnett.

"I'm deeply sorry for your unbearable loss," the journalist said in an emotional interview video clip. Burnett asked if the grieving father had been able to bury his wife and children. Perebyinis, whose family was killed by a Russian bombing attack, said he had laid them to rest, but admitted that he'd been sobbing for days.

"Serhiy drove 3 days to bury his wife, Tetiana and children, Mykyta and Alisa," Burnett tweeted. "He and Tetiana were married for 23 years and celebrated a second wedding in 2012," she continued. "Serhiy, Tetiana, Mykyta, and Alisa spent a lot of time together and loved active weekends – laughing, biking, skiing in winter. Tetiana loved planting flowers," Burnett wrote in another tweet. She shared that Perebyinis wanted the world to know that his 18-year-old son had been in college and dreamed of becoming an IT professional. While his 8-year-old daughter loved to create art and to dance. Burnett begged people to listen to his story and posted a link to the full interview.