Thirteen years ago Chris and Taya Kyle, the couple featured in the Oscar-nominated film American Sniper, were married in Midlothian, Texas.
Chris Kyle, who was said to be the most lethal sniper in military history, was shot and killed with his friend at a shooting range more than two years ago, leaving behind his wife of 11 years and two young children.
The man who shot Kyle was Eddie Ray Routh, a fellow veteran reportedly suffering from PTSD. On February 24, 2015 he was found guilty by a jury, but has appealed for a new trial under an insanity plea.
Taya, 40, posted this letter to his memorial Facebook timeline at the start of their 13th anniversary on March 16:
It's 13 years today. Our wedding anniversary. I miss you and I love you. I feel you in my heart and soul so strongly. I am more blessed to have been your wife than anything else in my life.
Today, I am thinking of our new relationship, when you rented a boutique hotel room in San Diego and surprised me with 2 dozen long stem pink roses when we arrived.
"I knew then I was the luckiest girl in the world to be with tough, romantic, loving you."
"I am thinking of the way you loved to blow the budget on gifts for me with that huge smile on your face and eyes lit up..."
I am thinking of [the day] you sent me a dozen long stem red roses with a card that said "Just Because."
"Today, I have a choice. I can bury myself under the covers and acknowledge the pain of missing you and mourn the future anniversaries without you ..."
"Or I can celebrate never having a day without you in my heart because you loved me enough to leave me a lifetime of memories and beauty."
I am somewhere in between today.
And if I didn't tell you enough in life, then let me tell you today... YOU Chris Kyle, are IT for me. YOU are the package deal who makes hanging on worth it.
I loved you yesterday, I love you now, and I will love you all the days of my life.
Thank you for marrying me, even if I'm the one who had to ask you.
Ema O'Connor is a politics reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, DC.
Contact Ema O'Connor at email@example.com.
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