Wrestling icon Pat Patterson came out as gay Thursday, June 12, on the finale of WWE Network's reality show Legend's House. The 73-year-old WWE legend revealed on the episode that he had kept his sexual orientation a secret for decades, sharing his struggle with his fellow pro wrestling pals.
"Sitting here tonight, I'm gonna say something that I would never want to say, publicly," Patterson says in the clip provided by WWE. "For once in my life, I'm gonna be me now," he continues, tearing up. "I survived all this, being gay."
Sobbing and wiping his face with a napkin, he adds: "I lived with that for 50-something years. I had a friend with me for 40 years and I lost him because he had a heart attack… It's tough guys, it was tough."
Patterson's friends expressed their support for their longtime buddy, saying, "We love you, Pat."
In his confessional, Patterson explains his decision to come out now. "I gave my life to the business, I don't regret nothing," he says. "For the rest of my life, I want to be happy."
The WWE star, according to the WWE Network's website, came from poverty in Quebec when he joined the organization. Patterson rose to fame as the organization's first-ever "Intercontinental Champion," and became known for his signature move, the "atomic drop." In 1996, he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. Patterson now works for WWE as a creative consultant.
According to Bleacher Report, Patterson's announcement in Legend's House was filmed back in 2012; however, the show didn't start airing until April of this year. He is the second WWE megastar to come out as gay. Last August, Darren Young made the announcement while speaking to a TMZ cameraman in the airport.