Santa Monica – StoryCorps
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A Couple Reflects On The Crossroads of Their Relationship

In 1999 Tom Peters met JoAn Joseph at a party for his job. Tom felt obligated to attend, and  JoAn tagged along with a friend who didn’t want to go alone. And yet, they locked eyes from across the room, and danced and talked the night away. 


Tom Peters and JoAn Peters in 2000. Courtesy of Tom Peters.

They fell in love and their relationship moved quickly, even though Tom was much older than JoAn and had already been married twice with three children. But a couple of years into their relationship, they came to a crossroads, and had to make a difficult decision.

Tom Peters and JoAn Peters at their StoryCorps interview in Santa Monica, California on January 6, 2020. By Courtney Gilbert for StoryCorps.

Tom and JoAn came to StoryCorps to reflect on that moment, and their journey since.

Top Photo:  JoAn Peters and Tom Peters in 2001. Courtesy of Tom Peters.

This broadcast is supported in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Originally aired January 20, 2023, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

With your support, StoryCorps is able to record more stories that help lift up underrepresented voices, bridge political and social divides, and preserve personal histories for the future.


An Adoptee Reflects On The Mother-Daughter Bond That Carried Her Through the Loss Of Her Birth Family

In 2000, Jami Miyamoto traveled to China during the era of the “One Child” Policy to adopt a 10-month old baby girl. Originally, Jami had the name “Maya” in mind, but after spending time with her daughter, Jami stuck with her given name, Delian, and they use the shortened name of “Daily” today. 

Jami holding 10-month-old Daily in China, June of 2000. Courtesy of Jami Miyamoto.

Daily doesn’t remember when she first learned that she was adopted. Her mother has always talked openly about it. They both hope to know more about Daily’s birth family, and it’s a curiosity that reinforces their bond.

Recently, Daily and Jami came to StoryCorps to reflect on their closeness, and what it means to Daily to look into her past.

Top Photo: Daily and Jami Miyamoto in Santa Monica, CA on July 26, 2022. Courtesy of Daily Miyamoto.

Originally aired Friday, July 29, 2022, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

This broadcast is supported in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Now In His 80s, Gay Veteran Remembers Getting Kicked Out Of The Navy Despite Being “A Perfect Sailor”

When Joseph Patton joined the Navy in 1955, he had to serve in silence. At the time, gay, lesbian, and bisexual people could not be open while in the military. 

Decades later, at the age of 81, Joseph recorded for StoryCorps from his home in Santa Monica, California, where he spoke about his service and how he was eventually kicked out of the Navy due to the assumption that he was “homosexual.”

In the 1970s, Joseph fought to get his undesirable discharge upgraded to honorable, which then allowed him to receive benefits for his service.

Joseph died in 2020. He was 83 years old.

Top Photo: Joseph Patton, who recorded in Santa Monica, California with StoryCorps in 2019. Photo by Jud Esty-Kendall.
Bottom Photo: Joseph Patton in the mid-1950s, while serving in the US Navy. Photo courtesy of Joseph Patton.

Originally aired December 26, 2020, on NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday.

The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

Since as far back as the Revolutionary War, LGBTQ service members have been discriminated against in various ways by the United States military. On this episode of the StoryCorps podcast, we bring you stories from veterans who were kicked out of the service, as well as some who stayed in the closet to keep their jobs.


First, we’ll hear from Sue McConnell (above left) and Kristyn Weed, who both served during the Vietnam-era and came out as trans after leaving the military.

Matlovich Time Cover

Next, we’ll remember Technical Sergeant Leonard Matlovich, who received national attention for outing himself as gay in 1975 while serving in the Air Force.


Lastly, Air Force veteran Jeri Dilno and Navy veteran Joseph Patton take us back to the 1950s and early 60s, when they were given undesirable discharges due to the assumption that they were “homosexual.”



Top photo: Artwork by Michael Caines.
Second photo: Sue McConnell (left) and Kristyn Weed at their 2018 StoryCorps interview in Tucson, Arizona. By Mia Warren.
Third photo: Leonard Matlovich, who appeared on the cover of Time in 1975 to challenge the military ban on gay service members.
Fourth photo: Jeri Dilno with her friend Andrea Villa in 2013 at their StoryCorps interview in San Diego, California. By Cambra Moniz-Edwards.
Fifth photo: Joseph Patton, who recorded in Santa Monica, California with StoryCorps in 2019. By Jud Esty-Kendall.
Bottom photo: Joseph Patton in 1956 when he was a member of the US Navy. Courtesy of Joseph Patton.

Released on May 21, 2019.

Like the music in this episode? Support the artists:
“Overture” by Patrick Wolf from the album Sundark and Riverlight
“Step In, Step Out” by Blue Dot Sessions from the album Crab Shack
“Watermarks” by Blue Dot Sessions from the album Crab Shack
“Untitled #9” by Yusuke Tsutsumi from the album Birds Flying in the Dark
“Cast in Wicker” by Blue Dot Sessions from the album Aeronaut
“Paloma” by Fabian Almazan and Linda Oh

This podcast is brought to you by supporters of StoryCorps, an independently funded nonprofit organization, and is made possible in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people.

Robin Share and Rami Aizic

Since childhood, Rami Aizic knew he always wanted to be a father and just assumed that one day he would meet a woman, fall in love, and it would all fall into place.

Then he realized he was gay.

Robin Share wanted to be a mother, but she did not have a partner, so when a friend introduced them and they hit it off, they began making plans to have a baby together.

At StoryCorps, Rami and Robin talk about their journey to become parents to their now 14-year-old daughter.

Originally aired November 1, 2013, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

Tom Kurthy and Robert Madden

Tom Kurthy (left) tells his friend Robert Madden about coming out to his parents. While his father was “very cool” about it, his mother initially took much longer to accept the news, blaming herself for his homosexuality.

Originally aired August 1, 2008, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

George Hill

George Hill recounts the 12 years he spent homeless and living on the streets until he got himself to a hospital psychiatric unit and off the streets for good.

Originally aired February 22, 2008, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

Janaki Symon and Melissa Wilbur

Sisters Janaki Symon (left) and Melissa Wilbur discuss their childhood and their mutual hatred for one another, which began to change to love for each other after the death of their mother.

Originally aired February 1, 2008, on NPR’s Morning Edition.