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.

Bill Hess

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

Justin Connaher and John Pennell

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:

Russell Nelson

Russell Nelson grew up in Dillingham, Alaska where everyone can, goes fishing. He and his neighbor, Fred Torrisi, stopped at a StoryCorps Alaska booth...

Willy and Adrienne Shelton

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

StoryCorps with Alaska’s military: Nancy Lee Baker & Susan Grace

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:

Harold Luke

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...

Finding comfort with Alaska CARES

A mother talks to Providence Foundation philanthropy officer Mary Sullivan about how Alaska CARES helped her son and family following revelations of his being sexually abused. Now an advocate for Alaska CARES, which helps children after the trauma of abuse, she shares their story to let others know that hope and healing are possible. Thanks for listening!

Johnathon Green

StoryCorps traveled to Alaska in February to record the voices of our service men and women as a part of it’s military voices initiative. This story comes to us from JBER. Military recruiters told Johnathon Green that a hand disability would prevent him from ever serving in the military. They said he couldn’t shoot a gun. Johnathon found his way to Alaska anyway, and eventually into the military’s ranks. Instead of shooting a gun, Johnathon shoots a camera. At StoryCorps, he tells a co-worker about his long path into military service. Listen now:

Tom O’Conner

Love can start in strange ways. And in the case of Tom O'Conner, a Dillingham fisherman, the ingredients include spilled spaghetti and a motorcycle...

Della Chaney

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

Jada Smith

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...

Ted Sutton

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

Da-Ka-Xeen Mehner

Da-Ka-Xeen Mehner is like many people today. His heritage is a stew, but the prodominant ingredient is Tlingit. He's an artist in Fairbanks.  Aldona...

Luke Koonook

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

Fredrick Katelnikoff and Innocent Philo

Fredrick Katelnikoff, a security officer at Providence Health & Services Kodiak, shares with Father Innocent Philo, the experience of being a former Village Public Safety Officer (VPSO) and the lessons that now guide him personally and professionally. Thanks for listening!

Charlotte Fitzhugh

79-year-old Charlotte Fitzhugh lives in a converted school bus in Fairbanks, Alaska. 20 years ago, she decided to run in the 1,000-mile-long Yukon Quest...

Ginny Shaffer and Lisa Solomonson

Friends Ginny Shaffer and Lisa Solomonson recall the passing of Ginny's infant son, Bryson, twelve years ago. At the time, Lisa was a nurse who cared for Bryson and his twin sister, Holland. Both were born with heart defects. Ginny and Lisa reflect on the experience of caring for Bryson and Holland through this difficult time. Ginny and Lisa bonded during the care of Bryson and Holland through this difficult time. LISTEN HERE

Mark and Denise Wartes

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

Mike Jeffery

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

Mary Shields and Judy Gottschalk

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