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Military wife named Lejeune "Spouse of the Year"

By Kianga Kelley
Published On: Jan 30 2013 03:55:33 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 28 2013 06:11:52 AM CST
JACKSONVILLE -

 A local military wife wins an unexpected title because of a stranger’s nomination. Cassy Chesser, of Jacksonville, has been named Camp Lejeune's “Spouse of The Year." The award recognizes military spouses' important contributions and commitments to the military community and country.

Chesser, a mother of two, says she was unknowingly nominated by a close friend and a complete stranger. Both praised Chesser for her devotion to her husband and children. She beat out seven men and women for the title.

“It’s humbling cause I just feel like I’m doing my job you know as a Marine Corps wife and as a mother,” said Chesser. “A special needs mother you know, my job is to advocate for him, my job is to stand by my husband, but it’s definitely gratifying to know that people find such inspiration from that.

Chesser’s 7 month old son, Wyatt, has Down syndrome. She says at first it was hard for her to accept that her son would have special needs, but with help, through the Military’s Exceptional Family member Program, she was able to cope. Chesser says there is a need for more programs to assist families with special needs, and she plans to use her new title to make it happen.

“I think it would be great if there were more programs made available by the military for special needs families just to make life easier for us. We've already got enough stressful hardships we don't need to be worrying about how we can take care of our children,” said Chesser.

This victory is only the beginning for Chesser who is preparing to compete for the national title of "Marine Corps Spouse of the Year." If she wins that title she hopes to take home the big one, "Military Spouse of the Year." Anyone can vote. Online voting will take place one day and one day only on February 5th.

To vote for Chesser: http://msoy.militaryspouse.com/Voting/Results?branchId=4