Who Is Patrick Swayze and What Do We Know About His Wife and Kids?

The death of a loved one is always hard to bear; losing them unprepared is even more painful. The abrupt departure of Patrick Swayze from the face of the earth remains, to date, one of the biggest celebrity deaths in the entertainment industry. Until his demise, Patrick was a hard-working actor who recorded success in several other fields. Although his fans were not prepared for his demise, they all have come to embrace the fact that he is no more but his legacies still speak volumes to date. Many years after his shocking death, the daring feats, as well as the life and times of Swayze, still garner much interest from the public. Here’s everything you need to know about the legend and his family.

Patrick Swayze at a Glance

Patrick Swayze's fact card

Background Information On Patrick Swayze

Patrick Swayze, of blessed memory, was a top-notch actor, songwriter, and dancer whose life began on 18th August 1952, and ended on 14th September 2009. He was a native of Los Angeles, California, where he was born by Jesse Wayne Swayze and Patricia Helen Swayze. The actor’s full name is Patrick Bartholemew Swayze while the name of the city where he spent his early years is the Oak Forest neighborhood of Houston.

Patrick’s mom was a dancer, dance teacher, and choreographer while his dad was an engineering draftsman. The two raised the actor in the Roman Catholic faith, alongside his older sister, two younger brothers and one younger sister. Their names are Vickie (1949–1994), Donald (born 1958), Sean (born 1962), and Bambi (adopted sister) respectively.

As regards his education, Swayze studied at Oak Forest Elementary School, Waltrip High School, St. Rose of Lima Catholic School, and Black Middle School while living in the Oak Forest neighborhood of Houston. It was also during this period that he equipped himself with several athletic, artistic skills, and learned martial arts like Wushu, classical ballet, Aikido, ice skating, and Taekwondo. In addition to taking up roles in his school’s plays, Patrick also featured in their football team but his hope of becoming a professional footballer was dashed by a devastating knee injury. Upon moving to New York City in the year 1972, Swayze enrolled in the Harkness Ballet and Joffrey Ballet schools, where he finalized his formal dance training.

1972 was the year Patrick first proved his worth before the audience during a show called Disney on Parade. He featured alongside the Disney Theatrical Group and was cast as a dancer. He took up his first film role in the 1979 comedy film, Skatetown, U.S.A. The actor became a household name in the industry in 1983 after his role in The Outsiders and subsequently became overwhelmingly popular within and beyond the entertainment community for playing John Castle in the 1987 romantic dance drama, Dirty Dancing.

During his lifetime, Patrick Swayze appeared in over thirty films and more than 10 TV projects, including Saturday Night Live (1990, as a host). For his contributions in both the film and TV industries, he won 6 awards from 17 nominations, as well as a star of the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Besides his dance and acting stints, Swayze also co-wrote soundtracks for some movies, including the song ‘She’s Like The Wind’ which has been covered by several other artists.

Who Are His Wife and Kids?

Until his death in the year 2009, the actor was married to a respected American dancer, actress, writer, and director called Lisa Niemi. The couple met each other for the first time in 1970 at Patrick’s mom’s ballet school, the Houston Ballet Dance Company and subsequently began a relationship after Lisa turned 15. They tied the knot on the 12th of June 1975 and remained married until Swayze’s death.

Patrick Swayze
Lisa and Patrick image source

Nothing beats the joy of having your own kids and seeing them become responsible human beings in life. Patrick, in his lifetime, waited for over three decades to have his own kids with his wife but all his efforts to become a dad proved abortive. He died without any kid of his own although his wife suffered one miscarriage during the early years of their marriage.

Elisabeth Anne Haapaniemi is the birth name of Swayze’s wife. A licensed pilot, she has Finnish heritage. The writer was born on May 26, 1956, in Houston, Texas and her parents’ names are Edmond Melvin Haapaniemi and Edna Karin Hyttinen. As an actress, Lisa has co-written, directed, and starred in several projects in the TV and film industries, including The Beast and One Last Dance, wherein she featured alongside her husband.

Patrick’s widow has since remarried. She walked down the aisle for the second time with a Boston-born jeweler called Albert DePrisco on May 25, 2014. Since Lisa remarried, she has kept a lowkey profile, thus, there is no available information about her new family.

What Caused The Death of the Actor?

Patrick Swayze was diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer in the month of January 2008. In the course of a tough battle against the disease, the actor took up several measures to free himself from the deadly ailment. Almost one year after his first diagnosis, the Dirty Dancing star was hospitalized with pneumonia reported to be a complication of chemotherapy for his cancer.

Sadly, the actor drew his last breath on 14th September 2009 with his family by his side. He was aged 57. His cause of death was listed as cardiorespiratory arrest with an underlying cause of advanced pancreatic cancer. Swayze’s body was cremated after which his ashes were scattered in New Mexico, precisely on his ranch.

Fact Check: We strive for accuracy and fairness, if you've found a possible error, be it factual, editorial or something that needs updating, please contact us
Chika Udeh
Chika Udeh
Chika holds a B.A in English language/History and has over 5 years experience in content development and journalism. She loves playing with words and when she is not writing about people and events that matter, she is probably listening or dancing to some real, cool jams.

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