Their gay wedding at L.A. Veterans Administration Hospital will move you

Chris Robinson is pictured here marrying Dale and Takashi.
31 years on, Takashi Nakaya and Dale Green, a Korean War Veteran, who live in Toyohashi, Japan, were married at the Veteran's Administration Hospital in West Los Angeles.
31 years on, Takashi Nakaya and Dale Green, a Korean War Veteran, who live in Toyohashi, Japan, were married at the Veterans Administration Hospital in West Los Angeles.

BY TROY MASTERS  |  (An update to this story is posted here and a version of this story was also published here)  It was love at first sight. And so it will be until the last breath.

Support their Go Fund Me campaign.

- Advertisement -

“The second I saw Takashi I knew he and I would be together forever,” said a teary-eyed Dale Green, 85, a Korean War Veteran.  “There wasn’t even a slight chance that we would not be.  It was love at first sight and it was profound and mutual.  We both knew that, then and there…and still.”

Thirty-one years ago, when Dale and Takashi Nakaya, 53, met while working in a textile factory in Lima, Peru, the world was a very dangerous place. Open hatred of homosexuals was a menacing danger made all the more lethal by AIDS hysteria. Peru was engaged in an increasingly violent armed conflict with rebel forces intent on replacing the Peruvian state. No aspect of life in Peru was stable. Takashi, a person of Japanese heritage with a Japanese passport, felt the heat of oppression and feared violence. Dale, an American citizen, was adamant that they flee.

But for bi-national gay couples in 1985, immigration options were non-existent. Takashi was unable to obtain a visa to the United States and Dale would not leave Takashi to stay alone in an explosive Peru. So, they decided to move to the safety of Japan, a place where Dale would not have trouble obtaining, at the very least, a tourist visa.

Takashi celebrates with his family of friends back home with Mimi in Toyohashi
Takashi celebrates with his family of friends back home with Mimi in Toyohashi

 In Japan, the couple flourished. They built a beautiful life full of friends and a traditional Japanese home full of love. From Japan, they traveled the world together—their home is decorated with photos of the couple’s travels: Egypt, Istanbul, Mykonos, Paris, Amsterdam, Rome, Berlin, Peru, Mexico, New York, Los Angeles…

Their strategy to remain together required Dale to leave Japan every 3 months so as not to violate his tourist visa. Because gay relationships in Japan have almost no legal standing, Dale was never able to satisfy Japan’s requirements for obtaining residency.

“I knew that every time Dale left Japan there was a chance he’d be unable to return,” said Takashi. “We sometimes imagined reversing our strategy, with me using my Japanese passport to enter the U.S. on a tourist visa and departing every few months, but we loved Japan and since I had a career we never gave it more than passing thought.”

As the years passed, Dale and Takashi settled into the routine. Peaceful, always polite Japan was never a place that homophobia or politics would be a disruptive force. As long as Dale was able to re-enter Japan, all would be fine.

But the realities of growing older can disrupt everything.

Dale Green is 85 years old.
Dale Green is 85 years old.

In August, while at home in Toyohashi with Takashi and their dog, a Golden Retriever named Mimi, Dale suffered what appeared to be a stroke and was rushed to a hospital. He stayed a few weeks and was never given a thorough diagnosis. “We were alarmed at their lack of urgency,” Takashi said.

“Dale has always thought things out several steps ahead. He’s a master of anticipating obstacles and making sure the path is as smooth going forward as he can possibly make it,” Takashi said.

When doctors told him that his hospital stay would likely be an extended one, an alarmed Dale spent the night mulling his options.

Takashi explained the obstacles: “Japan has an incredibly complex medical system. With Dale, the complications quickly became extreme. He could not overstay his visa. Veterans benefits, SocialSecurity, and Medicare are essentially useless abroad. Even though there is a VA hospital in Japan, Dale did not qualify for treatment there because he is not an active service-member. Foreigners are not allowed to stay in Japanese hospitals without private insurance for more than one month. Dale was in the hospital on a cash basis. We were looking at going broke within days.”

Dale made a firm decision to leave the hospital and Japan.

By the time Dale and Takashi boarded a United Airlines flight, incurring the necessary cost of Business Class seats, Dale was beginning to experience impairment in his limbs and was unable to walk. His right side was weakening rapidly and his left side was no longer mobile. On arrival at LAX, Dale and Takashi took an Uber to the Emergency Room of the Veterans Administration Hospital in West L.A. Dale had planned it that way. “He felt that an ambulance would not give us choice of hospital,” Takashi said.

On arrival, the VA doctors immediately worked to establish a diagnosis. Within 24 hours, doctors had identified several areas of swollen lesions on Dale’s brain. In discussing the results with Dale, they learned that, years earlier, he had been treated for Melanoma on his nose. The information led doctors to order a full body scan that revealed several other areas of lesions on his abdomen, his liver, his lungs, and bone. Stage 4 Melanoma requires radiation therapy and possibly chemotherapy, he was told.

Doctors tell Dale that Melanoma has likely spread throughout his entire body and that the prognosis for recovery is poor.
Doctors tell Dale that Melanoma has likely spread throughout his entire body and that the prognosis for recovery is poor.

The information was incredibly hard to take. But, aside from his own mortality, Dale began to seriously think about Takashi’s well-being and future.

In recent months, they had discussed taking a trip to the U.S. together so that they could get married. But, because they live in Japan, a country that does not recognize same-sex marriages, a U.S. marriage, as they understood it, offered them little. They felt “married” already. All of their friends around the world knew they were a couple.  

In many ways, partly because they live abroad, they were simply uneducated about the benefits and protections marriage equality offers gay couples. Even though there was a lot of news in Japan about marriage equality becoming law in the U.S., that news focused narrowly on the fact that some people wanted it and others opposed it.  

For couples living in marriage equality “hostile” nations, the benefit of marriage is vague and may not frequently be discussed.

Dale, a lifelong Republican, did not understand until it was explained to him that gay marriage was U.S. law. “I never dreamed of such a thing,” he exclaimed. “The Supreme Court ruled that way? Well, that’s just astonishing. That’s something I’d want to do for Takashi,” he said as he became wide-eyed and straightened in his chair.  When told that Trump and the Republicans have promised to rescind Marriage Equality if they win in November, he paused and simply said “Neither is going to happen.”

Dale and Takashi did not fully appreciate, for instance, that in the U.S., and other countries that honor same-sex marriages, their relationship would be recognized to the fullest extent of laws granted to heterosexual married couples, including surviving spousal benefits and all legal protections. The U.S. would recognize their spousal rights whether or not their country of residence recognized them.

The clock was ticking for Dale and Takashi.  

Takashi had to return to Toyohashi to care of their home and to return to work.  But the separation was too painful to bear and they decided that getting married would be a wonderful way to mark their love for one another and to solve many of their problems.

Because of Dale’s condition it was impossible to get married in the ordinary way. He could not leave the hospital and go to a marriage bureau to get a license or hold the required ceremony outside of the hospital.

West Hollywood City Councilman John Duran suggested a notary wedding and put the couple in touch with various officials who could help with suggestions to arrange it.

Dale and Takashi hired Chris Robinson, known as the Officiant Guy, to come to Dale’s Veterans Administration bedside and conduct the wedding. Mr. Robinson’s role is to notarize all of the necessary identifying documentation and other information required to obtain a marriage license, and then fully process it through a marriage bureau. He also performs wedding ceremonies. 

Nationally recognized, immigration attorney, Lavi Soloway, who famously won the historic green card case of another gay bi-national couple, Anthony Sullivan and the late Richard Adams on the basis of their 1975 marriage, and who specializes in all aspects of U.S. immigration law, was urgently hired by Dale and Takashi to represent the couple.

According to the couple, Soloway filed a marriage-based green card petition immediately after the ceremony, thereby initiating a process that will ensure that Takashi and Dale are protected under the family unification provisions of U.S. immigration law, including if Takashi is forced at some point to conclude his case as a widower.

Everything was magical.

As Dale and Takashi waited for Mr. Robinson, a team of doctors entered the room and explained to Dale that his situation was dire and that Stage 4 Melanoma is very difficult for any patient to overcome. The doctors were matter-of-fact and resolute, but in a flourish Dale interrupted them and thanked them. “In just a few minutes a man is coming in here to marry me and Takashi. We have been together for 31 years and now is the time. I have to marry my man and get better so we can go back to Japan and live the rest of our time together.” The doctors were thrilled and tripped over themselves offering congratulations and best wishes.

Member of the Veteran's Administration staff surround Dale and Takashi
Member of the Veterans Administration staff surround Dale and Takashi

Dozens of staff members—doctors, nurses, orderlies, secretaries, and social workers—lovingly flooded Dale’s private ICU room and surrounded the couple as Mr. Robinson conducted the Los Angeles Veterans Administration Hospital’s first same-sex wedding.

Chris Robinson is pictured here marrying Dale and Takashi.
Chris Robinson is pictured here marrying Dale and Takashi.

Their wedding was a distillation of all we have been fighting for these past 50 years. Love. Respect. The dignity of having the country you have served honor your love. Acceptance. Full inclusion.

Mr. Robinson asked: “Dale Robert Green, do you take this man, Takashi Nakaya, to be your lawfully wedded husband?” Dale, fighting back tears, managed to say “Yes, forever.  Always.” Robinson continued his questioning. “Do you promise to hold him from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until you are parted by death.” Dale, barely able to speak, gazing with an intense pride into Takashi’s eyes, said, “I do. I do. I do. I love him. I do.” Takashi’s answers were joyful and tearful and full of love, “I love this man with my whole self, my soul. I do. I do. Yes, I do.”

Applying their signatures.
Applying their signatures.

Once Robinson pronounced the couple married, the room erupted into dance and cheer, with hugs from the entire staff.  It was a sincere expression of love and affirmation.

Takashi and Dale kissed repeatedly and told one another “I love you.” The expression on both of their faces was a mixture of bliss and astonishment. “For people to be accepting of us is one thing,” Takashi said with tears rolling down his face, “but to celebrate our love with us—total strangers—is something incredible.”


Takashi returned to Japan without Dale, but he left Dale with an incredible sense of hope and love. An iPad was set up so that they could communicate daily. Over the next two weeks, they were able to do so until Dale’s ability to respond faded.

It is unlikely that Dale will ever be able to return to Japan. On Thursday, doctors moved Dale into the Intensive Care Unit and informed him that he was no longer able to tolerate cancer treatment.

Always thinking ahead, he asked for removal of the Do Not Resuscitate Order he had previously committed to.  Unable to speak he simply pointed to the purple band that denotes a DNR order and tugged at it and cried, “Cut.”  His first urge was that he now needed to be reunited with Takashi, for both their sakes.

Skyping with Takashi as Lilly, a 12 year old Miniature Schnauzer, watches over him.

Takashi was able to communicate with Dale via Skype and, as he did, tears rolled down both of their faces. Dale gently stroked Takashi’s face on the iPad screen and tried his best to kiss his face.

Takashi is now en route to Los Angeles to be by Dale’s side.

A campaign has been launched to help the couple take care of their mounting expenses.



  1. … [Trackback]

    […] There you will find 35172 more Infos: […]

  2. … [Trackback]

    […] There you will find 82033 more Infos: […]

  3. … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here: […]

  4. … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here: […]

  5. … [Trackback]

    […] There you will find 59328 more Infos: […]

  6. sergio rossi sale

    Very nice post. I have really enjoyed visiting your site posts. In any case I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon! Thanks a lot, I’ll attempt to visit more frequently. Happy new year!

  7. herve leger dresses sale

    I can’t believe your site would be so mind blowing and epistemlogically significant nevertheless I will alert my other friends , relatives, and significant others thank you very much and never let your self-esteem be lowered because you are a great in…

  8. … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here: […]

  9. montre hermes h

    d’élever mon voice.Now, frère, Im un homme séparé, un je ne inQUIZite en aucune mansbusiness mais vous me hache droite, une que je dis vous droit. commerce Ole Tom Perkinskin avec furriners, fer, il a LARNED leurs manières. Vous regardez oleTom! Enfe…

  10. ecco shoes on sale

    Boa noite amigos, com certeza mandar um SMS grátis está cada vez mais trabalhoso devido falta de opções das operadoras de telefone. Há ainda os websites que prometem entregar meu SMS mas nem sempre chegam recepiente final. Alguns como o Mundo oi e o Oi…

  11. ceinture hermes femme noir

    ont ces pauvres gens engagés thatthey, aussi, ne devrait pas partager les avantages de la civilisation occidentale? … Bysome, en effet, leur état est expliqué sur l’hypothèse que theirdesires ne les incitent pas à se perfectionner. Il n’y a pas de…

  12. mammut outlet

    I have had my brand new Apple iphone Four for less than a couple of days now and i should point out that for any individual thinking of getting an phone, just purchase the 3gs. Not only will you save a lot of money but you will probably save yourself a…

  13. moncler outlet store

    I had this website saved a while ago but my notebook crashed. I have since gotten a new one and it took me a while to locate this! I also in fact like the design though.

  14. mammut jacket review

    Thanks for getting the time to discuss this, I really feel strongly about it and seriously reading excellent on this subject. If doable, as you obtain expertise, would you mind updating your websites with considerably more tips? It truly is very valuab…

  15. Air max pas cher

    Nice post. I learn something more challenging on different blogs everyday. It will always be stimulating to read content from other writers and practice a little something from their store. I?d prefer to use some with the content on my blog whether you…

  16. PR Letting Solutions

    Wow, wonderful blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you make blogging look easy. The overall look of your web site is magnificent, as well as the content!

  17. Gormiti

    I’ve been browsing online more than 3 hours today, yet I never found any interesting article like yours. It?s pretty worth enough for me. In my opinion, if all webmasters and bloggers made good content as you did, the internet will be much more useful…

  18. prix de ceinture hermes

    délicieux, soupira Frau Godowska. Ma fille et moi haveoften vous observé à travers la fenêtre de la chambre. Nai nous, Sonia? Sonia absorbé ma forme extérieure et visible avec un regard vers l’intérieur andspiritual, puis répéta le geste magnifique p…

  19. golden goose femme pas cher

    northernclimate. Il ne pouvait pas empêcher d’ajouter que ceux-ci pourraient peut-être inclure huit ou tenraces de perdreaux. Il a également poursuivi Bankss enthousiasme pour la recherche polaire et tookover son protégé Parry. En Juillet 1826, Maria…

  20. hermes bag birkin

    sert à augmenter notre confiance dans l’exactitude générale des hissources, tout en même temps, il illustre de façon très efficace la façon dont inwhich inexactitudes possibles, déduites à partir de données indépendantes, peuvent havearisen en fois1…

  21. golden goose online

    et la douleur musculaire chronique. Ce chiffre hasrecently été remis en question, étant donné que les essais antérieurs peuvent avoir été methodologicallyflawed leur manquait un groupe témoin neutre de patients; et la définition de cureitself est ouve…

  22. sneakers golden goose

    soigneusement évité drawingany conclusions générales, et en particulier fait aucune réclamation médicale du tout sur la valeur thetherapeutic des traitements de gaz à la pneumatique Institute.In une Préface importante Davy a décrit comment sa nouvelle…

  23. hermes ceinture homme h

    Dans ce contexte, un sujet a reçu remarquablement limitedattention: la relation entre la foi et économique et socialdevelopment. Les deux mondes sont restés raisons forimportant largement séparées. La principale préoccupation du bien-être spirituel de…

  24. golden goose scarpe

    genio per aver paura golden goose scarpa golden goose store milano di freddezza e insipidity, da cui theythink essi non possono mai essere troppo lontani. Succede soprattutto a thesegreat maestri di grazia ed eleganza. Spesso coraggiosamente proseguir…

  25. borse valentino outlet

    Seminari e ForumsPerhaps la parte più importante e visibile del programma IDB ha beenan ambiziosa serie di seminari e forum pubblici. I seminari si concentrano onapproaches a e le questioni intorno etica nel quadro ampliamento diLa dibattiti globalizz…

  26. borse burberry saldi

    e corse a giocare tutta la montagna. Un boscaiolo, whochanced di vedere la meraviglia, era molto spaventato in un primo momento, e thoughtthe cosa del tutto straordinaria; ma dopo un po ‘ha ottenuto usato per il bambino, ed è diventato molto affezion…

  27. cintura burberry

    fromperforming il dovere. Non vi è alcun eroismo nel tagliare un offwell mans testa, ed è una vergogna per farlo in modo pasticcione; ma non deve aman addurre la mancanza di abilità come pretesto per eludere l’ufficio, perché sfilata burberry è una c…

  28. cravatte burberry outlet

    Repubblica AUTENTICO, dimostrare l’inesattezza estrema con la quale il termine hasbeen usato in disquisitions.208If politi burberry parma ca si ricorre per un criterio per i diversi principi su cui sono stabiliti differentforms di governo, si può def…

  29. ceinture hermes

    Terre? Deuxième royaume-a 1Le fondée sur les valeurs approche se reflète dans le dialogue Theilo-COE autour du travail décent. Son objectif est de promouvoir le valuesof travail décent par les cadres et les instruments juridiques thatsupport il. Pecco…

  30. burberry cravatte

    ulteriore domanda:? il cui favore speciale amongthe dei dobbiamo cercare di assicurare, al fine di esecuzione più felice ofthese misure burberry udine e in conformità con tale risposta, cerchiamo di offrire un sacrificio di happyomen alle divinità cos…

  31. tracolla burberry uomo

    inNicholsons Journal, sono state risvegliando serio interesse a Londra. Ha iniziato approcci receivingunofficial da Sir Joseph Banks e Benjamin Thompson, e ci wastalk di una cattedra in chimica. Nel mese di febbraio 1801 di nuovo visitato Londra, andw…

  32. cuir hermes

    après-midi, l’après-midi de l’arrivée des étrangers avant trois mois. Personne d’autre était dans la chambre. L’étranger thedoor fermé, et est venu vers elle avec cette étape curieuse, rapide sautant de his.His long manteau était sanglé, et dans s…

  33. burberry shopping online

    business mossa per MSFTIts un grande breve, questo discorso. Microsoft ha affondato un sacco di capitale in DRMsystems, e speso un sacco di tempo l’invio di gente come Martha e Brian andPeter intorno alle varie stanze piene di fumo per assicurarsi ch…

  34. hermes emploi recrutement

    trône. Pour sa dernière heure, cependant, le roi ThasusTANGLEWOOD TALES62showed son souvenir vrai cœur de Europa, en ordonnant que fireshould toujours être brûlant dans son palais, et un bain fumants, andfood prêt à être servi, et un lit avec neige dr…

  35. cinture hermes outlet

    ha bisogno, ma al rango ofBoethius. La ricchezza d’Inghilterra è stato senza dubbio a quella di Scotlandmore di cinque a uno, e si sa che Henry l’ottavo, tra whosefaults l’avarizia non è mai stato annoverato, concesso a Roger Ascham, come rewardA v…

  36. burberry sciarpa uomo

    teorie ofcosmology, geologia, meteorologia, mesmerismo e l’elettricità. scientificideas Significativi appaiono in Note per la regina Mab 1812, il Monte Bianco 1816, Ode al vento dell’Ovest 1819, The Cloud 1820, The Magnetic Lady ai suoi 1821.His paz…

  37. cintura burberry uomo

    morte. Tale è lo stato abituale della mente che M. Loti hasbrought per la colorazione del suo books.He è correlato a noi come, quando era ancora un bambino, ha prima vide la sea.He era fuggito dalla casa dei genitori, allettati dalla vivace e pungenta…

  38. occhiali da sole prada donna

    La metà di questo piccolo dominio del Laird conserva nel suo ownhand, e l’altra metà, vive centosessanta persone, che paytheir affitto da mais esportato. Che affitto si paga, non ci è stato detto, non andcould decentemente indagare. La percentuale di…

  39. hermes cinture uomo

    im-strati A un’ulteriore ammissione, che, come per tutte le altre imposte, l’autorità di the167States rimane immutata. In qualsiasi altra vista sarebbe sia Unne-cessario e pericoloso; sarebbe inutile, perché se la concessione tothe Unione del potere…

Comments are closed.