WWE Icon Pat Patterson Comes Out
World Wrestling Entertainment Hall of Famer Pat Patterson revealed he is gay this week in a heartfelt and emotional speech, TMZ Sports reports.
Patterson, 73, made his announcement on the finale of the WWE Network’s "Legend’s House," and said he’s been in the closet for a half a century.
"Sitting here tonight I am going to say something that I never want to say publicly," said Patterson, who is now WWE’s creative consultant.
"From where I come from, I had nothing, no family, no money, and I ended up [working] with Vince [McMahon]...to me, that was the biggest achievement of my life," he added. "But there’s more to that. Sitting here tonight, I’m going to say something I would never want to say. For once in my life I’m going to be me. I survived all this being gay."
Emotions got high when Patterson teared up as he spoke of his partner of 40-years who passed away after a heart attack.
"I gave my life to the business and I don’t regret nothing. For the rest of my life I want to be happy," he said.
Patterson’s cast mates supported him, saying, "We love you, Pat. We’ve always loved you," E! Online reports.
The athlete was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 1996 and was the first Intercontinental Champion. Patterson also help created the Royal Rumble.
Patterson was accused of sexual harassment by former ring announcer Murray Hodgson in 1992. He was released from the WWE until the charges were dropped and he was rehired.
WWE star Darren Young made international headlines last August when he told TMZ that he is gay.
"Absolutely. Look at me. I’m a WWE superstar and to be honest with you, I’ll tell you right now, I’m gay. And I’m happy. I’m very happy," the wrestler said.
Watch Patterson’s coming out speech below: