‘Oh Sweet Lorraine’: 96-year-old man pens heartbreaking song in memory of his late wife

Nadine Kalinauskas
Good News

Grab the tissues, folks. The love song you're about to hear is quite the tearjerker.

When Green Shoe Studio in Peoria, Illinois, launched a singer-songwriter contest, asking local musicians to upload their original tunes to YouTube, the producers didn't expect to receive one special entry by snail mail.

Fred Stobaugh, 96, submitted lyrics of a song he wrote about his late wife, Lorraine, who passed away last year after 73 years of marriage.

On the envelope he wrote: "P.S. I don't sing. I would scare people. Ha ha."

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While the song didn't meet the contest's criteria, the producers couldn't ignore Stobaugh's moving entry.

"Oh, sweet, Lorraine, I wish we could do all the good times over again," the song’s lyrics read. "Oh, sweet, Lorraine. Life only goes around once but never again."

"I started to read the lyrics and was so touched by the song and without even meeting Fred we thought, we're going to do something," Green Shoe Studio producer Jacob Colgan told WMBD 31.

The studio decided to put his "Sweet Lorraine" lyrics to music and record it.

"We wanted to put it to professional music and sing on it and he said, 'Well, you know, that's great but I just don't have the money to cover it,'" Colgan said.

Colgan emphasized that the studio would be doing it for free.

The first time Stobaugh heard the finished song, he cried.

You might, too.

"I was sitting here one night, oh about six weeks after she passed away and just sat here kind of hummin’ a little bit and it just finally came to me," Stobaugh said of the song's inspiration.

"The song really helps me. It really helps me. It just seemed like she's just sort of with me. Which I know she's smiling, she's smiling down and she likes that song, I know."

Stobaugh's sweet love story is now going viral.

"Sweet Lorraine" is now available on iTunes. The proceeds from the song will help support Stobaugh.