PATRICK SWAYZE

"Patrick and Lisa embodied the meaning of the word 'commitment' in a marriage"

Barbara Boylan Schager Ames, Iowa

Thank you for this week's cover story on Patrick Swayze. It moved me so much I read it three times. I remember when I was 13 years old and Dirty Dancing came out and all the girls including myself were in love with Johnny. He was my first crush, and I continued to follow Swayze's career. My heart goes out to his wife, Lisa, and their family.

Joleana Johnson Sparr, Fla.

Thank you for your very moving tribute to Patrick Swayze. As a longtime fan, I thought of him immediately when I was diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer on Aug. 28. Except for my small malignant tumor, I am a healthy, fit, 60-year-old female who is now fighting this insidious disease. I am optimistic for a successful outcome, but am keenly aware of the bleak statistics. My hope is that your article and Patrick and Lisa's book will help raise awareness of this "silent" killer and bring needed research dollars into treatment and cure of this disease.

Noël McGraw Austin, Texas

When I looked up from my shopping cart today, all I saw was your cover of Patrick Swayze, and I got teary-eyed and placed a copy in my cart. Thank you for always giving him the respect he so richly deserved. He will be missed.

Cindy Carlson South Cairo, N.Y.

THE TRAVOLTAS

My heart continues to go out to the Travolta family. I do know how they feel, as I lost my 18-year-old daughter in a car/train accident almost four years ago. Famous or not, the loss of a child is the most painful experience a parent can go through. I hope the Travoltas continue to hold each other and accept the support of their family and friends. It is fine to grieve separately, but they also need to join together as a family.

Lisa Kintz Ogallala, Neb.

BEST & WORST DRESSED

Glad that Valerie Bertinelli can still rock that "hot bikini body." Now I would like to see a piece where Alec Baldwin rocks a Speedo.

Kyle Francis Millburn, N.J.

AMPUTEE FRIENDS

I cannot tell you how deeply I appreciate your story about amputees Bill Hansbury and Jake Bainter. I lost my leg last year at age 21, three months before my wedding, and have struggled ever since to feel "normal" again. The day I purchased the magazine, I was actually having one of my "poor me" moments, and reading Bill and Jake's story was exactly what I needed to simply get over myself. I have cut the page out and keep it in my bag as a reminder that different is not abnormal.

Amy Dunbar Dalton, Ga.

CRAIG FERGUSON

I loved your article on Craig Ferguson. He's the hot, sexy "boy next door" with an accent, and he makes me laugh! What more could a girl ask for? Craig, call me if you become single again!

Victoria Colalucci Naples, Fla.

UPDATE

STOPPING BULLIES

The bullying-related suicides of two 11-year-olds, Carl Walker-Hoover and Jaheem Herrera, that we reported on in the May 18 issue generated efforts to confront the problem. "I've heard from lots of parents in similar circumstances, and my advice to them is they have rights," says Carl's mother, Sirdeaner Walker. She testified July 8 before two Congressional committees in favor of antibullying teacher training. With a new school year, efforts to confront the issue at the earliest stages are also being addressed by the influential American Academy of Pediatrics. The group has updated its policy, encouraging pediatricians to view bullying as a preventable health issue and not as a rite of passage, as well as encouraging communities to promote antibullying programs.