Stephen Nichols steve patch johnson days

Jill Johnson/JPI

“I can only say, ‘Don’t wait. Do this now,’” advised the actor. “‘Cherish every moment with your loved ones before they are gone.’”

A year after the death of his sister at age 71, Stephen Nichols had her on his mind and in his heart. He always does, really. Taking to social media, the Days of Our Lives leading man said that “I have found more acceptance, but still can’t believe she’s gone.

“In the year since Penny’s passing, I’ve been able to reflect, on a deeper level, on just how much she meant to me and how she impacted my life,” he went on. “In fact, Penny saved my life when we were small children.”

In a way, she still is. She’s given her brother perspective, a new appreciation for how fleeting life is — and he wanted to share it with his followers. “I can only say, ‘Don’t wait. Do this now,’” Nichols wrote. “‘Cherish every moment with your loved ones before they are gone.'”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Stephen Nichols (@stephen_e_nichols)

Even now, Penny continues to have a profound effect on Steve’s portrayer. “I miss her terribly, and because I’m always thinking of her, she is with me every day, teaching me,” he explained. “I am taking the best of who she was and learning to be a better person.”

More: Days of Our Lives star’s holiday photos

In closing, Nichols expressed the gratitude that had been plain to see in every word he wrote. “Penny, you are in my heart always and forever. Thank you.”

On your way to call or visit your own loved ones, stop off at the below photo gallery, a collection of images of soap stars and their beloved real-life sisters.