"Patrick Swayze (pictured left with wife Lisa Neimi, at the 1989 Academy Awards) passed away peacefully today with family at his side after facing the challenges of his illness for the last 20 months," said a statement released Monday evening by his publicist, Annett Wolf. Swayze died in Los Angeles, Wolf said, but declined to give further details.
C. Thomas Howell, who co-starred with Swayze in "The Outsiders," "Grandview U.S.A." and "Red Dawn", said: "I have always had a special place in my heart for Patrick. While I was fortunate enough to work with him in three films, it was our passion for horses that forged a friendship between us that I treasure to this day. Not only did we lose a fine actor today, I lost my older 'Outsiders' brother."
UPDATE — More tributes pour in
Jennifer Grey: "When I think of him, I think of being in his arms when we were kids, dancing, practising the lift in the freezing lake, having a blast doing this tiny little movie we thought no one would ever see. (He was a) real cowboy with a tender heart... it was not surprising to me that the war he waged on his cancer was so courageous and dignified.
"Patrick was a rare and beautiful combination of raw masculinity and amazing grace. My heart goes out to his wife and childhood sweetheart, Lisa Niemi, to his mom, Patsy, and to the rest of their family."
Whoopi Goldberg: "Patrick was a really good man, a funny man and one to whom I owe much that I can't ever repay. I believe in Ghost's message, so he'll always be near."
Rob Lowe: "Patrick lived a hundred lifetimes in one. I will remember him for that, and I will remember him for how much he loved his wife Lisa. He was such an intense actor, so full of passion and vigour. He definitely made the most out of it. It's a sad day."
Demi Moore: "Patrick you are loved by so many and your light will forever shine in all of our lives. In the words of Sam to Molly. 'It's amazing Molly. The love inside, you take it with you.' I will miss you."
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