Life as a military spouse is a life like no other. As Navy wife Sarah King describes it, it’s a life that teaches you to be “resilient, strong and courageous.”
These Heroes at Home follow their spouses from duty station to duty station, working tirelessly behind the scenes to raise children and keep the home life a comfortable, happy one so that theirservice members can focus on the job at hand.
When we asked for nominees for outstanding spouses this year for the annual Heroes at Home section, accolades poured in for 15 men and women for their work in going above and beyond. These spouses are out in the community, volunteering their time and working to help the lives of others, sometimes while holding jobs of their own. Christopher and Kayla Lepley, who both serve
in the Navy, nominated each other.
Take Jessica Reiche, wife of Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Christopher Reiche. In 2019, Jessica answered a call for help from a fellow military spouse for breast milk donations. She ended up donating over 1,000 ounces to one little girl, and 4,000 more to others.
Another of our eight finalists, Athena Hanson, last year balanced her job as a first-grade teacher with raising five children and caring for her husband, Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Derrek Hanson, when he developed cancer. She also cared for two of their children when they got COVID-19.
“She has endured more than most in the last year alone and continues to love and care unconditionally,” her husband said in nominating Athena.
As for our winner, Sarah King, after finding out that one of her sons was dyslexic, became a certified teaching instructor to not only help her son, but also to help others in the community.
The wife of Chief Petty Officer Joshua King, Sarah is passionate about special education reform, and she’s worked for years to raise awareness about apraxia, a severe speech disorder that affects her family. Sarah’s approach to being a military spouse is to treat everything with an open mind and to look
for the good in every situation.
“You,” she says, “are in charge of creating your own happiness.”