So many of these Patrick Swayze remembrances focus on what a complete badass the man was. It’s true. He was. Clearly. But Swayze was also incredibly graceful and completely gorgeous.

I remember as theater-geek kid in BF Nowhere Colorado, I convinced my parents to sign me up for just about every dance class I could find. Being a boy, in dance classes, in the farm country of the Western slope, led to no end of teasing and merciless bullying. I admit, I brought it on myself, but I found some solace in knowing that a guy like Patrick Swayze was also a dancer. He loved to move like I loved to move, and he was strong and handsome, and took no shit from no man. Plus, I liked that we shared a first name.

Graceful? Absolutely. But Swayze also proved he could be downright beautiful, playing a gorgeous matronly drag queen in To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar.

When this film came out, I was just beginning what would turn out to be a long term relationship with another man. I can’t remember how the film played in the gay community, but I know at that point in my life, I was tickled to see Swayze taking on a somewhat taboo role.

So yeah, Patrick Swayze could kick some ass, and make damn sure that no-one would ever put Baby in a corner. But he could also be beautiful, graceful, and soft without losing a trace of his masculinity. He’ll be missed.