Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. The holiday may be celebrated one day a year, but love is eternal.
An Erie man took his love for his wife and immortalized it in song.
“She was a very special person. I just felt inspired, especially by the music, to say something and just kept evolving. Some of the words didn’t appear to me immediately, but after a good night’s sleep all of a sudden those words started to take focus and so forth. And I rewrote a little bit of it, but a lot of it was inspired. That’s just my feelings towards my wife after all these years,” said John “Jack” Niskanen, who was married to his wife, Audrey for over 60 years.
She had a full life being a secretary to Representative Jim Merry and was asked to be a lobbyist. She and Jack decided that was the not road they wanted to go down.
Jack recalls her being a good secretary. He recalls her being good at everything and having the biggest heart.
“She was such a unique person. Good worker. Smart as a whip. Good with the finances. Good at baking, cooking, you name it, she was good at it. And she was full of empathy,” said Jack.
Jack’s son, Sam, sees his dad’s song a something that captures the spirit of his parents’ love and lives together.
“It’s just kind of a capsule of my parents, from their point of view, just a little bit younger in life for most of the things. A lot of it was through our lives, too. Just, you know, realizing the appreciation my father had and the love he had for my mom,” said Sam Niskanen.
Jack’s love for Audrey began during their high school days in Girard. It became stronger as they raised three children. And their love continued through her health challenges and death in June of 2019.
His love remains strong this Valentine’s season.
“But when you stop and think about it, love is the reason for living. That’s not that profound, I don’t suppose. But to me it’s what it’s all about really,” said Jack.
It’s what it should be for all of us.