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Gone but not forgottenPosted Tuesday, September 15, 2009, at 9:35 AM
It was reported Monday evening that Patrick Swayze, known for his roles in the movies "Dirty Dancing," and "Ghost," died after a 20-month battle against pancreatic cancer. He was 57.
Swayze is one of several well-known icons who have died this year.
Others who died include author Jim Carroll ("The Basketball Diaries"), DJ Adam Goldstein, writer Dominick Dunne, politician Ted Kennedy, journalists Walter Cronkite and Robert Novak, musicians Michael Jackson, Les Paul and Kitty White, activist and founder of the Special Olympics Eunice Kennedy Shriver, film director John Hughes, radio broadcaster Paul Harvey, basketball legends Johnny "Red" Kerr, Wayman Tisdale and Norm Van Lier, actors Dom DeLuise, Farrah Fawcett, David Carradine, Natasha Richardson, Ron Silver and Bea Arthur, television host Ed McMahon, football player Steve McNair and politician/football player Jack Kemp.
Swayze battled his illness head on, much the way he tackled roles in his career.
In addition to the above mentioned roles, other movies Swayze is known for include "Point Break," "Road House," "The Outsiders," and "Red Dawn."
Swayze also played the lead role of Orry Main in the television series "North and South."
Although Swayze will be remembered for "Dirty Dancing," and "Ghost," I will remember him in "North and South," and "Red Dawn."
I can remember being fascinated by "North and South" as a youngster. When it was on television, it seemed like the perfect story for the Civil War.
An epic drama regarding two families and how they coped during those trying times.
I will also remember Swayze for his role as the older brother of Charlie Sheen in "Red Dawn."
Although the acting isn't all that impressive (especially watching it today), when I was a child, I thought it was one of the best movies I had ever seen.
Anytime that film was on, I practically stopped everything I was doing and had to watch it.
The whole idea of teenagers standing up against attackers was just so amazing to me.
I will also remember Swayze for his role in "Point Break," where he appeared as the leader of a group of bank robbers who were surfers. To me, it was interesting that he took on the role of a bad guy.
Even though Swayze was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in March 2008, he never stopped working.
He took on a role in the A&E show "The Beast," a show which drew 1.3 million viewers on average during its 13-episode run. The show, however, was not renewed.
Swayze will also be remembered for arguably one of the funniest skits "Saturday Night Live" ever produced, where he portrayed a wannabe Chippendales dancer faced with a dance-off against Chris Farley.
Swayze was nominated for a Golden Globe three times, having been nominated for "Dirty Dancing," "Ghost," and "To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar."
He also dabbled in music, having sung the son "She's Like The Wind," for the "Dirty Dancing" soundtrack. The song was inspired by his wife Lisa Niemi, whom he was married to for 34 years.
All of these celebrities may be gone, but they will never be forgotten.
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