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The couple reflects on the loss of AIDS that brought them together: NPR



Larry Dearmon (left) and Stephen Mills perform on the wedding day at Lake Tahoe in 2013.

Kindness of Larry Dearmon


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Kindness of Larry Dearmon

Larry Dearmon (left) and Stephen Mills perform on the wedding day at Lake Tahoe in 2013.

Kindness of Larry Dearmon

Larry Dearmon met with Stephen Mills in 1992, about the height of HIV / AIDS epidemics.

In a recent interview with StoryCorps, the couple reflects the loss that linked them – the death of Larry's former partner, Michaela Braiga, AIDS.

"When I first met him, I was in the army, and oh, he was handsome, extremely intelligent, ambitious, he loved everything," says Larry.

Stephen asks him to describe what happened when Michael was diagnosed with HIV, later on advancing in AIDS.

Michael Braig poses for a photo in Frankfurt, Germany. In 1991 he suffered AIDS.

Kindness of Larry Dearmon


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Kindness of Larry Dearmon

Michael Braig poses for a photo in Frankfurt, Germany. In 1991 he suffered AIDS.

Kindness of Larry Dearmon

"He took the test, came from work and cried, and immediately I knew that HIV was positive," says Larry. "And I said to Michael:" I'm still here, and I'm not going anywhere. ""

Larry's relationship with Michael was still very new at the time. They met only six months before Michael was diagnosed.

"You could cut and run very easily, but you're nine years old," says Stephen.

Larry was Michael's caretaker until the very end of 1991.

"When he died, I cleaned him, changed clothes, and then I called my mom," says Larry. "The hardest thing I've ever done."

After Michael died, Larry was upset. The couple lived in Germany, and after Michael's death, Larry moved to Arkansas to be close to close friends. "It was [Michael’s] the idea to move to Little Rock afterwards, because we knew it was coming, "Larry Stjepanu said." And I moved, and then, a few months later, I met you. "

Larry says he loves Stephen not feeling threatened by his last relationship. For Stephen, his husband is dedicated to this relationship that makes him safe in their own. Larry stayed with Michael, caring for him, pointing out that "if we have a rough time or if we are sick, you will stay with me," says Stephen.

Stephen tells Larry that he is one of the favorite people he ever met.

"Show me you love me every day," Stephen says. "Tell me you love me every day."

"Because," says Larry, "you never know how many days you've stayed."

Produced for sound Morning edition per Kelly Moffitt and Von Diaz .

StoryCorps is a national non-profit organization that gives people the opportunity to talk to friends and loved ones about their lives. These talks are archived in the American Center of Folklife at the Congress Library, allowing participants to leave legacies for future generations. Learn more, including how to interview someone in your life on StoryCorps.org.


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