Erie locals are reacting to the recent passing of Pittsburgh Steelers legend Franco Harris as stores say their memorabilia is flying off the shelves.
The former Steelers fullback passed away on Tuesday, and one of the managers of Sports Obsessions at the Millcreek Mall says their Harris merchandise is already sold out.
One local fan says the passing feels like a piece of his childhood is gone as he recalls the “Immaculate Reception” solidifying his love for the Steelers and Harris.
“I had a Franco Harris poster and a Mean Joe Greene poster in my room and they both assured me that life was going to be okay. Especially Franco Harris because he was carrying that ball every day and running right through my bedroom wall and reminding me of just the strength and power of never giving up,” said Franco Harris fan David Deal.
Another fan recalls the moments he met the former fullback at 18-years-old.
“We found him, walked up to him, and asked him for his autograph. He signed our ticket stubs, I said ‘thank you very much Mr. Harris.’ ‘No problem kid.’ Shook my hand and my hand vanished,” said fellow Franco fan Bob Wahlburg.
Wahlburg says the news of Harris’ passing made him emotional, as he says he sparked the era for the Steelers.