January 29th 2013
The Prince Albert Daily Herald
WeekliesPrince Albert -
Author tells true story of deeds that went
Author and former P.A. resident DeeDee Chomyk, who writes
under the pseudonym D.D.K., holds up copies of her first book, Unpunished.
Chomyk will appear at the John M. Cuelenaere Public Library on Saturday at 2
p.m. for a public reading of the novel,...
former Prince Albert business owner who recently transitioned into writing will
return to the city on Saturday for a public reading of her first novel.
John M. Cuelenaere Public Library ,
Victims Services ,
, Cayman Islands ,
Tennessee , Prince Albert
DeeDee Chomyk, who writes under the pen name D.D.K., will appear in the John
M. Cuelenaere Public Library at 2 p.m. to promote her book
The novel is based on a true story, which in the author’s words concerns
“sexual abuse … betrayal, mental illness and murder.”
“The only reason why I turned it into a novel was because after working with
Victims Services, after volunteering with the Crisis Line and realizing how many
people are struggling, or (as) I like to refer to it … stuck in darkness, I
decided that it needed to be put to print,” Chomyk said.
“So many people have experienced a lot of this and a lot of people have
witnessed a lot of this,” she said. “If people would speak up or do something
about it, we can save lives. I mean, this story ends in murder … and it’s a true
story and it’s an unsolved murder.”
Though not originally intended as a book, the amount of documentation
compiled for Donna’s case over years by the RCMP and city police led
acquaintances of Chomyk to convince her there was enough material for her to
From her early years, Donna faced many obstacles. Raised in an alcoholic
household and subjected to abuse from her stepfather, she grew up to find
herself trapped in abusive relationships.
“I think that what happened with her is because of being raised in a home
where there’s a lot of abuse, and then watching her 17-year-senior sister go
through a lot of … spousal abuse, sexual abuse in the home, I don’t think that
she really recognized the difference between love and abuse,” Chomyk said.
“There’s a fine line, right?”
Donna began dating a man named Allan who started to subject her to emotional
and physical abuse. Resorting to the legal system, she eventually obtained half
a dozen restraining orders against him altogether. She hoped it would be enough
to keep him from re-entering her life.
“She comes home one night and she decides she’s going to have a good restful
sleep because life’s getting better, and something just doesn’t feel right,”
“Just that sense … She got up, she walks over to her closet, opens the door –
and there he is, standing in her closet. And sometimes under her bed, on her
deck looking in the window, sitting at her kitchen table when she walks up the
stairs after a night out.”
Medical professionals advised Donna that the situation with Allan could very
well end in suicide, homicide or both, but she seemed to be making progress in
After isolating herself for a time out of fear, Donna went out one night and
met a man named Merv in a casino. Starting out as friends, their relationship
I don’t think that she really recognized the difference between love and
abuse. - DeeDee Chomyk
Merv was a devout Catholic and went to church three times a week, but at the
same time suffered from depression and was going through a divorce. He also told
her he had unspecified (at first) issues regarding sex.
When Merv received a job offer in the Cayman Islands, he asked Donna to join
“Donna’s dream was to be in the tropics someday, because she grew up cold all
the time,” Chomyk said. “She lived in a porch that was ice on the walls and
windows, and her stepdad gave her two inches of bathwater to bathe in. She used
to pour it over her head to keep warm.”
Unfortunately, it was only when Donna began visiting Merv regularly at the
island that the abuse started. She soon realized he carried some dark secrets,
and then Merv too began to subject her to emotional and physical abuse.
Eventually he took her passport, credit cards, money and ID. She only managed
to escape the island in the end with the help of a friend. But things ended much
more poorly for Merv.
Donna’s struggle over the years against abuse was powerful enough to convince
Chomyk to take up the pen and immortalize it in print. She hopes that if others
hear Donna’s story, it will inspire them to reach out to others who are
suffering abuse or ask for help themselves.
Based on her travels, the effort appears to be paying dividends already.
“I’m getting a lot of positive emails and some men that have emailed me, it’s
made it worth it already,” she said, describing the story of one such man from
“He said, ‘I’m reading your book, and apparently, I’m feeling like you’re
writing about me.’ And these are his exact words, he says, ‘I’ve been a real
prick … I guess it’s time I did something.’ And I just thought, ‘Wow! If one
person gets happy and healthy, it’s worth it, right?’”
A resident of Prince Albert from 1980 until about four years ago -- during
which she was the owner of Ye Olde Hair and Health Salon and its later
incarnation, Hairmosa -- Chomyk currently lives in Estevan, where she oversees a
restaurant with her long-time partner. However, she may yet return to
One idea for a second book stands out.
“I’m thinking probably Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow, because I was in
the hair industry for 33 years, and that’s a story in itself.”
P.A. Daily Herald
Author and former P.A.
resident DeeDee Chomyk, who writes under the pseudonym D.D.K., holds up copies
of her first book, Unpunished . Chomyk will appear at the John M. Cuelenaere
Public Library on Saturday at 2 p.m. for a public reading of the novel, which is
based on a true story.