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Afghan interpreter, journalist flees country and starts new life in Colorado

Saifurahman Ayar Lemar.jpg
Posted at 9:09 PM, Dec 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-03 23:09:22-05

DENVER — As Saifurahman Ayar Lemar walks with his son down the street of their new home in Denver, it’s the peace and quiet of Colorado that puts him at ease.

"There’s no gun fire, there’s no RPGs," Ayar Lemar said.

The view reminds him of his old home.

"I love Colorado because it’s the same in Afghanistan. We have mountains," he said.

According to the state, The 33-year-old is one of about 975 Afghan evacuees to arrive in Colorado since Aug. 1.

Over the past decade, Ayar Lemar worked as an interpreter for the U.S. military and would go on to become a journalist. Because of his careers, the family man knew it wasn’t safe for him or those he loved.

"The Taliban does not like journalists and interpreters. Especially because I was working with Marines back in Afghanistan. All of this they knew. They’re going to kill me," Ayar Lemar told Denver7.

After spending time in Qatar, the family made their way to United States. Leaving behind a country gave Ayar Lemar some difficult memories.

When he was just 4 years old playing with other kids in a field, a rocket-propelled grenade hit nearby — killing five of those kids and taking most of the fingers on his right hand. Years later, working as an interpreter, their U.S. convoy hit a road mine, sending shrapnel into his body. As an Afghan journalist, another bombing left him with a limp.

"My leg is a little bit shorter than this leg," Ayar Lemar said.

All of this adversity has only made him more determined to find a better life ahead.

"I start my life. It is what it is that happened in the past. I’m thinking about my future and for my family," Ayar Lemar said.

With another baby on the way, that’s what this soon-to-be father of two plans to do — in a new country and new lease on life.

The state is still expecting another 2,000 more evacuees through March.