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Swayze memoir reveals how he learned he had cancer

In "The Time of My Life," his posthumously published memoir, Patrick Swayze reveals how he first got the devastating news 20 months ago that he had pancreatic cancer. The actor, who died Monday at 57, co-wrote the book with his wife Lisa Niemi. Excerpts will appear in the new issue of People magazine, out tomorrow.

"I had been having some digestive trouble, mostly acid reflux and a kind of bloated feeling, for a few weeks," Swayze writes in the book, which will be released Sept. 29. "I've had a sensitive stomach my whole life, so I hadn't thought much of it, but lately I just couldn't shake the constant discomfort."

Swayze knew what he was facing. "My doctor told me my chances of surviving for more than a few months weren't high," he writes, "and I had no reason to doubt him."

But Swayze fought throughout his illness, even during the production of his A&E series, "The Beast," in the summer of 2008. "I continued with chemotherapy all the way through the shoot," he writes. "But I never took any painkillers since they dull not only your pain but also your sharpness."

The actor maintained a positive attitude. "I began thinking to myself, I've had more lifetimes than any 10 people put together, and it's been an amazing ride," he writes. "So this is okay."

Meanwhile, People reports that "Dancing With the Stars" will pay tribute to the late actor on its Sept. 23 episode. Swayze had a brief, behind-the-scenes role on the ABC show during its 2005 debut season."We have some very fond memories of [Swayze] coming to help us out when we were a tiny little show way back when," said Conrad Green, the show's executive producer.


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