Great-Grandma Marries Man She Rejected In 1954
Some feel good news for you on a Friday. It took more than sixty years, but a Minnesota great-grandmother finally said yes to her teenage sweetheart. Eighty-two-year-old Janet Skillingstad, married eighty-one-year-old Gene Ertel, back on Oct. 26 of this year. That's 64 years after she broke off their engagement.
Back in 1954, Janet gave back the engagement ring Gene gave her, telling him she wanted to concentrate on nursing school.
Janet told KARE-11 “I didn't want to tie him down for three years, I thought I was doing the right thing at the time.” Both Gene and Janet moved on from one another and ended up marrying other people and raising families.
Both Janet and Gene lost spouses, actually, Gene became a widower twice but he told KARE-11 that he never forgot his girl. “I never stopped thinking about her,” Ertel told the television station. It was in December of 2017 that Gene was diagnosed with prostate cancer that he decided to try and find his lost love. Ertel hired a private investigator, who produced a telephone number, which he called. That phone call lasted 90 minutes, which turned into a visit, then a date, then finally a ring.
This time she kept it, as she put it "I couldn't turn him down a second time, that would be devastating."