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Central Texas Spotlight: Military spouse writes book to help families cope with deployment

Chandelle Walker has been a military spouse for nearly two decades. She and her children have lots of experience with deployments, so writing a book on the topic was second nature to them.

FORT HOOD, Texas — With such a huge military presence in Central Texas, deployments affect many families in the area. It can be challenging, but a military spouse has found a way to make the transition a tad easier. 

KCEN Channel 6 weekend anchor Emani Payne spoke to Chandelle Walker about her effort to help military families. 

Walker has been a military spouse for about 20 years, and she said the deployment process is always tough, especially for her children. 

"We've been in the military for 20 years now, and we're still not retiring," she said. "Maybe in a couple years."

Walker said she hopes her new book will offer some comfort for military families, as their loved ones head off to protect and serve this country. 

Over the years that meant she and her two young children, who at the time were still trying to understand what deployment was all about, said lots of goodbyes to her husband.

"We tried to just fit the life and do the best we could along the way," she said. "It was difficult many times because you're trying to be both roles and help support the children and help them understand."

One day, Walker penned her kids' thoughts on deployment to paper, creating the book 'Daddy Left With Mr. Army: A Child's View of Military Deployment.' 

It's a project that was 14 years in the making. 

"These military children are incredible," she said. "They're asked to move so often, they're asked to make new friends, they're asked to watch their mother or father leave, so they're asked a lot in this life and I hope that this book helps people recognize that more."

Aside from looking at deployment from a child's perspective, the book also features helpful tips, like a list of deployment coping skills that worked for the Walker family. 

"I hope you'll enjoy it in your home as much as we have," she said.