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Love, Death, and Television: How I Became Dallas Steele

By Dallas Steele | @DallasSteeleXXX

Fans are often shocked to hear I was a TV news reporter and, later, a news anchor before I transitioned to porn and escorting several years ago. Reporting the news on television and hardcore gay porn aren’t that different. In both businesses, you have to look good on camera, deal with difficult personalities, have some idea of who your viewers are, and work hard to keep them entertained. People who know about my early work think the transition was quick. In reality, it took almost five years to go from news set to porn set, and the change had everything to do with my late partner.

I’ve always liked to show off. As a boy, I remember dancing around the house naked. Later, in my pre-teen years, I discovered I was inherently nosey. I found out everything that was going on in the neighborhood and reported the info back to my parents.

I knew at eight years old that I wanted to be a TV news reporter. I was on-air in radio at 17, and moved to TV news at 23. I worked in Bakersfield, California; Beaumont, Texas; Naples-Fort Myers, Florida; and Dallas, Texas. I earned two Emmy nominations in Dallas, along with multiple regional awards in the other markets. In Dallas, I discovered bodybuilding and competed in small, regional competitions for a few years.

My last news gig was in Southwest Florida. I was the main anchor of an ABC station. After two years, it abruptly came to an end when the boss told me they’d done some research and found that people didn’t like me. It was strange to hear, considering our ratings were up.

I will always believe it had more to do with me being openly gay — not a good fit for a very conservative area of the country. At that point, I decided I was done with TV news. TV news newer allowed me to be myself. The consultants and managers always try to make you into someone else, someone they think the public will like. The irony is, I’m a thousand times more popular now than I ever was in TV news. I’m also much happier.

I left Florida and moved back to Michigan where my later partner, Kelly, was the creative director for an auto magazine. We had been together for many years by then and commuted every weekend by plane to see each other. When I moved back, his contract came to an end, and we moved back to Dallas where he landed an amazing job. We bought a new house, new cars. Things were going well.

I had no idea that his lifelong battle with depression was consuming him. In August of 2014, after bartending a long shift, I came home to find him face down in blood and vomit. He had aspirated after overdosing on mass quantities of an inhalant. We were together 13 years. That night will always be the worst memory of my lifetime.

I never say “suicide” for a reason. I don’t believe his intent was to kill himself. My opinion and the opinion of the medical examiner is that he just got carried away and took too much. That night, the cat food was out to warm up. His clothes were laid out for the next day, and his computer was still on. The official cause of death was “accidental overdose.”

His will had not been updated to include any of the new purchases, and there was virtually no money in the bank, no life insurance, nothing. Facing the possibility of being homeless once the bank foreclosed on our house, my best friend suggested I apply with Colt and Titan, knowing I had always wanted to do porn. Seeing no other options, I applied immediately. Both studios contacted me within the week.

My first shoot was a solo video with Colt Studios at a house on top of a mountain in Northern California’s Sonoma County. Two hours of still photography, then lunch, then two hours shooting a jack-off video in the warm sun on a lawn chair.

The director, Kristopher Weston, was very easy to work with, especially considering it was my first time doing this. What you don’t see in the video was my fellow pornstar, Tyler Rush, acting as a fluffer. He made out with me between takes to keep me hard. It worked. The following day, I did a scene with Colt’s other label, Bound Jocks, costarring with Tyler.

That day was a mix of excitement and nerves. When it was over, I was crazy proud, and I think Kelly would have been too. Kelly used to say he dreamed of being with a Colt Man, and he was. He just didn’t know it.

That same week, I had my first shoot with Titan Men in Palm Springs. My first screen partner was the amazing Dirk Caber in “Blue Collar Ballers”. He remains the only screen partner I’ve ever had any off-screen sex with. Usually, once the shoot is done, you’re tired and hungry. But on that first day, I was hungry for more of Dirk.

Titan produces high-quality porn. Their shoots take lots of time and hard work. I really enjoyed my two years working exclusively with the company. While I’m certainly open to doing more work with Titan, I’m also excited about being a free agent and working with new studios, different directors, and different talent. Current projects include “Berkeley: The Sophomore Years,” from Naked Sword. Most recently, I shot a bondage video in the California desert with and director Sebastian, for release later this spring.

My personal life continues to improve. Six months before his death, Kelly met a boy (age 33, but looks 23) on Facebook who he envisioned being our “houseboy.” We called him DJ. We agreed to invite DJ to visit for the weekend, but Kelly was called away on business, so he came and spent the weekend with me. We agreed DJ would return another weekend, but Kelly died before that happened. In a very real way, I see the hand of God in this. I don’t believe God is ever the author of anything bad, but I do believe he knows when something bad is coming and finds a way, even with great suffering, to help us through it. DJ and I have become incredibly close.

While escorting, you meet a wide range of people. Some of them have it all together, others are a mess. Regardless of where they are, having experienced enormous loss and grief, I have instant empathy for those who are struggling with losing someone. Many clients have experienced career loss or career change, difficult aging, and a multitude of other challenges. I don’t share my story with everyone, but if I feel my experience helps me connect with them. I’m always willing to talk about it.

There are no pictures of Kelly in this post. I keep him close to me, a part of me that isn’t for everyone’s viewing pleasure. I think Kelly — an incredibly kinky, crazy man — would love my success in porn. I know he’s cheering me on.