Breaking Barriers | Prairie Public Broadcasting

Breaking Barriers

Excerpts from the Red River Rainbow Seniors oral history project called “Breaking Barriers: Harvesting LGBTQ Stories from the Northern Plains.” It features stories from folks who grew up back when being “out” was socially unacceptable.

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Contact the oral history project at redriverrainboworalhistory@gmail.com

On the occasion of The Transgender Day of Remembrance (Nov. 20), this excerpt from the Breaking Barriers Oral History project aired on the Main Street Radio show to help shed some light on the transgender experience. DD DuShane visits with interviewer Cindy Roholt.

David Fischer was born in South Dakota in 1950, but soon moved to North Dakota, growing up when being gay was often puzzling, and being out wasn’t imaginable. He attended NDSU, enjoyed a 38 year career in area hospitals, and retired in 2012.

Randy's path takes him through Catholic schooling, traditional marriage, and parenthood before finally embracing his true self.

In this episode, we hear from Robert Uebel as he visits with volunteer Mark Chekola.

Lynn recalls some difficult times.

In this excerpt, Anita Bender shares part of her coming out story, including the consequences her Mennonite parents faced for supporting her. She visits with volunteer Larry Peterson.

We hear from a former minister who served in churches in Iowa and Minnesota. He married a fellow seminarian, a woman, in 1969 and raised a family. But he eventually came to terms with his true self, came out to family and friends, and discovered a life he never thought possible. Here’s a portion of his visit with volunteer Darrell Hansen.

Episode 4: Jan Titus

Apr 13, 2019

Jan Titus grew up in a Methodist church, and later became a Lutheran minister. In this excerpt from his oral history, we learn how church leaders reacted when they learned he was gay. He visits with volunteer Larry Peterson.

Roger Schobinger was known across North Dakota for speaking on the issue of HIV & AIDS. On August 1st, 2018, he passed away at the age of 63.  In this episode of the Breaking Barriers podcast, we share an excerpt from Roger’s oral history as he visits with volunteer Bob Stone.

An anonymous interviewee describes his gradual realization about his sexuality, the impact on his family, and the joy he finds in his new life with his new love. He is interviewed by project volunteer Larry Peterson, professor of history emeritus.

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