William Morrow Publishers|Heidi Gutman/ABC
  • Taya Kyle, the widow of famed former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, whose story was portrayed in the movie, “American Sniper,” opened up for the first time in an exclusive interview with ABC News’ Robin Roberts about what Chris Kyle was like as a husband and family man, and how she and their kids are moving forward since his 2013 murder. In the wake of her husband's death, Taya Kyle wrote a memoir, "American Wife: A Memoir of Love, War, Faith and Renewal," which details their story and will be released on Monday, May 4.
    William Morrow Publishers|Heidi Gutman/ABC
  • When Chris Kyle earned his SEAL trident, he was stationed in Southern California, where Taya Kyle, who grew up in Portland, Oregon, was working as a pharmaceutical sales rep. The two met in a bar and Chris Kyle started off in a rocky way that she said was fairly true to how it was portrayed in the movie "American Sniper." "He was so genuine and had a depth to him," Taya Kyle said. "I was intrigued but I didn't think that it would ever be anything serious."
    Taya Kyle
  • Chris and Taya Kyle married on March 16, 2002. "I think I was scared that he was the one, honestly ... which sounds weird because I wanted to be really independent even though I knew I kind of needed somebody," she said. But from the start, she added, her husband was torn between his love for serving his country and his love for his family.
    Courtesy "American Wife," William Morrow Publishers
  • When he was home, Taya Kyle said, her husband was fully committed to their kids, a son he immediately nicknamed "Bubba" and a daughter he nicknamed "Angel." Taya and Chris Kyle are shown here in this undated photo with their son.
    Taya Kyle
  • "I truly don't think there's a better example of what a father should be than him," Taya Kyle said. "He played so hard with the kids, I mean, laughing. I can barely think of a day, you know, there may have been less than 10 in our whole lives that I remember him not laughing with those kids, no matter what kind of day he had."
    Taya Kyle
  • Taya Kyle said her husband loved being at home with his children. “He never expected them to be like him or to be like me, and whoever they were was good with him,” she said.
    Taya Kyle
  • As a SEAL sniper, Chris Kyle was sent to the worst areas with the heaviest combat. He served four tours in Iraq and his job was to spot and kill the enemy before they killed Americans on the ground. His fellow soldiers took to calling him "Tex." "American Sniper" screenwriter Jason Hall said Chris Kyle "was the guy that was always in the right time at the right place to take the shot that saved everybody's life."
    Taya Kyle
  • Over the course of his military career, Chris Kyle had 160 confirmed kills, earning him the title of the most lethal sniper in U.S. history. In between kill shots, Kyle would fire off emails to his wife, one saying, “Just counting the days, waiting for that big bird to take me home,” and another saying, “Smooooooch!!!! I can’t wait to give you a real one.”
    Taya Kyle
  • Chris Kyle being away started to take a toll on his wife, who was left home alone with two young kids. "[I was] simultaneously angry and thinking, 'I love him so much and I don't want to ever make him carry that burden when he's over there so I can't really let him know that I'm angry," she said. "How are you supposed to be mad at somebody who's serving their country and putting their life on the line every day?"
    Taya Kyle
  • Finally, towards the end of Chris Kyle's fourth tour, Taya Kyle said she hit her breaking point during a phone call with her husband. "I remember crying to him and saying, 'I don't want to tell you this because what if this is the last time that we talk? I don't want to tell you this because I don't want you to worry about it, but you can sense something's off in my voice even if I'm trying to hide it."
    Taya Kyle
  • After spending 1,000 days in Iraq, Chris Kyle came home for good, but war had changed him. He suffered from PTSD and became distant. "He had sleepless nights. He had high blood pressure. He had the horrible dreams. He had the mood swings," Taya Kyle said. The family moved back to his native state of Texas.
    Taya Kyle
  • Taya Kyle said there were a "number of times" they almost didn't make it as a couple. To work through the pain, Chris Kyle started writing what he had been through, which went on to become a best-selling book and eventually a blockbuster film, both called "American Sniper." Chris Kyle was 38 when he was murdered at a Texas gun range in 2013, and his wife has tried to keep his memory alive at home and through veteran advocacy. "His spirit is something that-- it's important to me to keep that alive for the kids," she said.
    Taya Kyle