StoryCorps

StoryCorps’ mission is to preserve and share humanity’s stories in order to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world.

StoryCorps traveled to Alaska in February to record the voices of our service men and women. This story comes to us from Fort Wainwright. The Army brought Marti Steury to Fairbanks in 1975. Life as a woman on an Army base wasn’t easy. Marty talks about her decision to enlist, and what it was like to wear a uniform during the Vietnam War. Listen now:

Asia Harmeling and Ralph Pasana talk about why they chose nursing. Ralph shares the memory when, as a teen one day, he wanted to spend time with friends rather than care for his grandmother and how that episode influences his work as a nurse today. LISTEN HERE

Jada Smith's family is not the only one to have drunks in its midst. But, unlike many, Smith has found strength and guidance from...

Mark Wartes grew up in Barrow. A white man, he was one of the last to live a traditional nomadic life on the North...

Arleta Lefler talks to her supervisor, Theresa Gleason, about how faith informs her work as a nurse. For Arleta, nursing is a "God calling." She recalls memorable moments of interacting with patients from throughout her career. LISTEN HERE

At StoryCorps, 92-year-old Nancy Baker tells her friend, Susan Grace, what it was like to fly. Nancy flew in a female auxiliary pilot group called the WASP. They flew military aircraft during World War II to free up male pilots for combat. Nancy and other WASP pilots were recently awarded a Congressional Gold Medal, the highest honor bestowed upon civilians by Congress. Listen now:

Justin Hayward Connaher was named after the lead singer of the 1960s rock group, Moody Blues. At age 5, he knew he was going to be a paratrooper. At 38, he knows he's a survivor. As part of StoryCorps at JBER, Justin spoke with his friend John Pennell about one of his earliest jumps. Listen now:

Mike Jeffery came to Barrow more than 20 years ago and stayed to become the judge presiding on the edge of the Arctic Ocean...

Luke Koonook is 80 years old and he has been whaling since he was a young man. He talks to Doreen Simmonds for StoryCorps...

Harold Luke was born in Nenana, Alaska and raised in a series of children's homes in Fairbanks, and by foster parents. When he grew...

Willy and Adrianne Shelton talk about their son Joel, his twin Nathan and their younger brother, and how Joel’s leukemia diagnosis and treatment has impacted their family, faith and relationships. LISTEN HERE

Bryant Skinner talks to colleague, Sara Lovell, about his work with Alaska CARES, a children’s advocacy center. During therapy, one young girl’s drawings affirm his belief that there is hope for healing. Patient permission was granted to share this story. LISTEN HERE

Walter Kanulie is a Yupik Eskimo living in Togiak, Alaska where hunting and fishing is a way of life and traditional knowledge is something...

Richard Beneville is a fast-talking former New Yorker who has made a life in Nome, Alaska - a town with a rich gold rush...

Dorcas Rock is a traditional healer in Barrow, Alaska. She spoke with her cousin Doreen Simmonds for StoryCorps Alaska. Dorcas has unusual gifts. Not...

Ward and Taylor Hurlburt are brothers. They fish commercially for salmon in Bristol Bay. But, the two have never totally put aside their sibling...

The ties that connect one generation to another were severed violently in many Alaska Native communities. First, the TB epidemic killed off many and...

Bill Hess lives in Barrow on the northern edge of Alaska. He was semi-adopted by an Inupiaq family - something he came to fully...

Ted Sutton, a Tlinget man from Southeast Alaska, was conceived during a drunken party in Sitka, Alaska. Authorities took him away from his parents...

Mary Shields and Judy Gottschalk's friendship was cemented through decades of adventures in Alaska. They lived like vagabonds, traveling the country on pennies,...