The grandmother of a little boy in Ukraine who Sir Elton John tried unsuccessfully to adopt has called on the singer for ‘any help’ he could give. Sir Elton and his husband David Furnish were captivated by little Lev Ageyev when they encountered him at an orphanage in 2009. But under Ukraine’s laws, gay men are banned from adopting and in any case Sir Elton, then aged 62, was considered too old. Sir Elton said at the time: ‘I would love to adopt him. He has stolen my heart.’
Lev’s grandmother Yulia, 61, has now rescued him from the orphanage. She said: ‘I have taken Lev out of the kindergarten until the trouble is over.’ She added: ‘I know he felt something for Lev. We’re worried what will happen so any help he could give us would be appreciated.’ She added: ‘Lev went away to a camp recently and ended up becoming the star. He told everyone that Elton John wanted to adopt him.’
After failing to adopt him, the couple publicly pledged to find him a home in his native country and send regular financial help. In 2011 Lev's grandmother said she had not heard anything for Sir Elton since his visit. She said the singer had also promised to help Lev’s HIV-positive brother, Artyom. Lev’s alcoholic mother Marina, who was also HIV positive, died of pneumonia in 2010.