Taking a complete 90 degree turn from her day job, Kristin Barnes, a Naval Aviator since 1992, has written her first children’s book based on a character who has accompanied her throughout her military travels. During a three year tour in Hawaii, Kristin fell in love with Hawaii, its culture and the islands’ natural beauty. It was here that she acquired what would be her traveling companion for years to come. Haysoos the Honu is the stuffed turtle who eventually accompanied Kristin to the Middle East.

Much like a Flat Stanley, Haysoos would travel via postal service to military friends around the globe including a visit to the Aircraft Carrier USS EISENHOWER and a flight over Afghanistan. These global adventures were reflected in Haysoos’ Face Book page which generated enough interest that friends eventually started asking when Haysoos would write his autobiography. And his story was born.

One of the first women to fly F14s in combat over enemy territory, she was for most of her career the only female aviator in her squadron. The challenge of fitting in to an established culture dominated by men has provided a life full of lessons in not only accepting her differences but how she could contribute and excel despite the challenges. Haysoos embodies this acceptance of circumstances, perspective and positive attitude; these are tools with which every child should be equipped. He is a simple but compelling illustration of her real life experience in acceptance and positivity and with so much life ahead of her one can only expect that Haysoos has many adventures yet to come!

Kristin currently works in the both the Physical Education and Leadership Departments at the U.S. Naval Academy. Her future after retirement from the military is uncertain but whatever that may be, she is certain there are more Haysoos adventures to share with her readers. Kristin resides in Arnold, MD with Haysoos and her dogs, The Big Lebowski and Little Miss Sunshine.