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article imageActor Patrick Swayze, 57, Dies of Cancer Monday

By R. Francis Rubio     Sep 15, 2009 in Entertainment
Actor Patrick Swayze lost his two-year battle with pancreatic cancer yesterday. The actor passed away peacefully with his family by his side.
LOS ANGELES - Patrick Swayze, best known for his leading roles in movies such a Ghost, Dirty Dancing, Point Break and more. He was a major box office draw during the 1980s through the early 1990s and continued working strong in the new millennium despite his diagnosis of pancreatic cancer in March of 2008.
He had recently finished a pilot for an A&E drama series The Beast which A&E decided to cancel even as the show pulled in 1.3 million viewers in only 13 episodes in 2009.
Swayze's publicist Annett Wolf released a statement Monday evening "Patrick Swayze passed away peacefully yesterday with family at his side after facing the challenges of his illness for the last 20 months."
No other details were given.
Born on Aug. 18, 1952, in Houston, Texas Patrick Wayne Swayze was a Hollywood movie actor with a background in ballet and gymnastics which helped him later in his career. His father, Jesse Wayne, was a champion rodeo cowboy and Swayze's Mom, “Patsy” Yvonne Swayze, was a dancer and choreographer as she was also the owned of The Huston Jazz and Ballet Company.
Swayze’s breakout role came in 1983, cast as the eldest greaser in a Francis Ford Coppola’s film The Outsiders which is the very same film that launched the careers of Emilio Estevez, Rob Lowe and Tom Cruise.
Then in 1987 Swayze became an overnight sensation starring in the years sleeper hit movie Dirty Dancing opposite Jennifer Grey, in which his earlier training in ballet and gymnastics helped him land the leading role as dance teacher Johnny Castle.
The actor landed two more roles in 1989 including Road House and Next of Kin which led up to his (some would say) biggest role in Ghost. The 1990 blockbuster romance brought actors Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore and Whoopi Goldberg together in one of the year's biggest hits with one of the 1990's most quotable quote – “Ditto."
Swayze said to Barbara Walters during an ABC interview early in 2009. "I'd say five years is pretty wishful thinking," he also added. "Two years seems likely if you're going to believe statistics. I want to last until they find a cure, which means I'd better get a fire under it."
Patrick married Lisa Niemi in 1975. She was also a dancer who took lessons with his mother. As a licensed pilot, Lisa would fly her husband to Northern California from Los Angeles for treatment at Stanford University Medical Center.
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