From DNA samples to children's drawings. How Ukraine is trying to identify some of those lost in war
Kyiv, Ukraine (CNN) Outside an already overwhelmed morgue in Kyiv, morticians swing open the back door of a refrigerated truck, and the heavy stench of death fills the air.
Dressed in full protective suits and masks they lower body bags, one by one, onto gurneys and roll them inside.
Bodies being delivered to a morgue in Kyiv on June 15.
But when Olha Matsala, Safonov's sister, examined what were thought to be his remains at the Kyiv morgue, she says she could not distinguish any of his features.
In nearly every case, the only hope for identification is through DNA analysis, but it's a lengthy and complex task.
DNA samples matchedThe process begins inside the morgue, where morticians extract tissue samples from the dead.
The samples are delivered to a Kyiv laboratory, where analysts work to build DNA profiles.
Analysts process DNA samples at the Ministry of Internal Affairs' laboratory in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Analysts at the Ministry of Internal Affairs' laboratory in Kyiv process DNA samples.
But some of those lost to this war will likely never be returned to their families.
"Some bodies are so damaged it is impossible to extract DNA," Tolkachova, of the Azov Regiment, explained through tears.
But with more remains arriving day by day, and the war grinding on in Ukraine's east and south, the task is daunting.