Pat Patterson, the long-time right-hand-man of Vince McMahon passed away in 2020. His career was one mired in controversy. McMahon says there wouldn’t be modern WWE without Patterson. Others say he was a negative force on the wrestling business, pointing to his involvement in the 1992 WWF ring boy scandal.

Now, new investigative reporting by David Bixenspan for Mel Magazine has revealed a shocking secret. Not only was the United States federal government keeping an eye on Patterson, but they had plans to deport him. A cache of documents relating to the investigation was obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request by Bixenspan and subsequently shared online. It was, the documents spell out, because of Patterson’s sexual orientation.

According to the report, the Immigration and Naturalization Service kept tabs on Patterson for years. Their goal was to uncover evidence that he was gay. The ultimate purpose of the investigation was to have Patterson deported to his native Canada.

As it turns out, starting at the end of 1964, the Justice Department’s now-defunct Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) spent years investigating Patterson, with the goal being to find evidence of “homosexual activity” that could be used to have him deported back to Canada. 


The report notes that the surveillance on Patterson took place at the end of an era known as the “Lavender Scare,” when government employees who were gay or thought to be gay were systematically persecuted.

An April 14, 1965 memo attached to the report detailed some of the agency’s spying activity. They were interested in interviewing people who might have information on Patterson’s homosexuality.

“This investigation based on information received from the OFFICE OF SPECIAL INVESTIGATION, United States [redacted], furnishing information that the SUBJECT is a homosexual. Object to locate and interview any persons who may be able to offer information of the SUBJECT’S possible homosexual activities.” 

The captivating story also includes some of Pat Patterson’s personal correspondence. This included such mundane things as a letter to promoter Jack Pfefer from August of 1962. Additional materials such as witness interviews are also included in the explosive documents.

Patterson, whose sexuality was frequently poked fun at on WWE television in the 1990s and beyond, publicly came out on the WWE Network reality show Legends House. After years of persecution from the most powerful government on the planet, Patterson was finally able to experience acceptance.

How do you feel about these shocking new revelations? Let us know in the comments!

Michael Perry

Michael Perry is a news contributor for Ringside News and Thirsty for News. Michael has an M.A. in Communication Technology from Point Park University in his hometown of Pittsburgh, PA.

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