Patrick Swayze and Alpha Heroes

Patrick Swayze and his wife, Lisa Niemi on the red carpet at the 1989 Academy Awards, March 29, 1989. This file is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 License by ROSSRSToday is normally Tip Tuesday and yet it’s hard when one of the icons of my generation has left us. So many of us grew up with Patrick Swayze and delighted in his many films. He played alpha heroes in so many of them. Strong. Conflicted. A loner. And yet like the alpha hero prototype, he was able to find happiness when he encountered a woman strong enough to stand by his side.

He seemed to be that way in real life as well. Strong. Compassionate. He had a life mate – his wife – who was by his side as in the picture I’ve chosen. I’ll remember him as a hero from his movies and his fight against cancer.

My first encounter with Patrick was in RED DAWN. Every time he came on screen my eyes pulled away to him. Then came NORTH AND SOUTH and I was a goner.

Like many, though, it was DIRTY DANCING that cemented my fandom. Who couldn’t love Johnny. “Nobody puts Baby in a corner.” Standing up for his love. Sigh . . .

A few years ago I went with my daughter to see DIRTY DANCING HAVANA NIGHTS. When Swayze came on the screen, the crowd in the theatre cheered and began to clap. A testimony to his enduring place in people’s hearts.

Sadly, he is gone but he will be long remembered by his many fans and by the generations to come who will continue to delight in his films.

7 thoughts on “Patrick Swayze and Alpha Heroes”

  1. My condolences to Lisa Niemi and the
    Swayze family.

    In 1955, I participated in the University of Houston Frontier Fiesta. Our nursing school group & one of the school’s fraternities presented a show which was called The French Quarter.

    Patsy Swayze took our group and turned us into CanCan dancers for the run of the show. Our rehearsals were held at her studio but I can’t remember if we
    saw any children there. Patrick would
    have been 3-4 at the time.

    Pat Cochran

  2. Patrick Swayne was every girl’s idol in Dirty Dancing and I loved all his other movies too. It is so hard to say goodbye to some one we all loved and adored but we all know he is in peace and a much better place now. The illness sure was a tough one to face and he did the best he could and alot more better than I know I could had done myself. He will still live on in all the movies he made for us. susan L.

  3. This is the second tribute to Swayze I’ve seen today in the blog-sphere. A true Hollywood Icon and one that I can say I admired. He wasn’t a sell out and most of all his love for his wife superceded all.

  4. My first time to see Patrick was in Road House and then Red Dawn. He was great in Ghost and I really liked him in Next of Kin. I was a fan long before I saw Dirty Dancing. I didn’t see that movie until a couple of years ago. He was a great actor and a great fighter. May he rest in peace. He will be missed.

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