Despite being born in Stuttgart to a stationed US Army officer and a registered nurse, her family didn't stay long, returning to the US within the year of her birth. She was raised in the suburbs of Arizona and was in a terrible accident that left her partially disabled. Despite that, Katerina tried her best to follow in her mother's medical footsteps to become a nurse practitioner, studying at the University of Arizona, she just barely made it through to graduation, having to stay an extra year and a half to make up for a few failed credits. Unable to find work for a few years, she stayed with her grandmother where she was only allowed a few months to actually work at her profession on the island of Lyutyi before the outbreak happened. Her grandmother shortly died of natural causes. By September, Katerina was 'voted' off the island by armed citizens who questioned her abilities, practices, mental stability, and just didn't want a foreign outsider on their island anymore, despite having a Chernarussian grandmother. She was allowed a small rowboat and a few days of rations, her physical disabilities making it difficult to actually row. Miraculously being spotted and picked up by a larger boat, they quarantined her, refilled some of her supplies, and dropped her off on the coast south of Miroslavl'. As the situation worsened in the city, she slowly made her way towards South Zagoria.