The actor worked twelve-hour shifts for several days and he made sure that no one would know about his heroic deed until over 10 years later.
Some people are born to make the world a better place and Steve Buscemi is just one of them. Even though most of his onscreen characters are of villains, he is nothing like that in real life. Long before he began acting in movies and iconic TV shows like Reservoir Dogs and The Sopranos, Buscemi was pursuing a completely different career path in his hometown of New York City. When he was only 18, he had plenty of experience of working odd jobs (including driving an ice cream truck), but he took the FDNY civil service test and became a firefighter. A young Buscemi served on "one of FDNY's busiest, Engine Co. 55 in Manhattan's Little Italy," according to a Facebook post by the Brotherhood of Fire.
If you're looking for something nice, a reminder that Steve Buscemi, a former FDNY firefighter, went back to his old firehouse on 9/11 to help rescue efforts and no one knew for years because he didn't publicize it at all. pic.twitter.com/VFyYQjljJt— Zack Budryk (@BudrykZack) September 11, 2019
Buscemi spent four years saving lives and battling with fire before he landed the lead role in Parting Glances (1986). The actor took a three-month leave of absence from his job during filming, but his love of acting was far greater so he left the job for good. Who knew in 20 years Buscemi would come back to put on his uniform and return to Engine 55 and be a firefighter once again?
Every 9/11 I like to share this story of Steve Buscemi working 12 hour shifts looking for survivors.— Ben McDonald (@Bmac0507) September 11, 2019
"Very few photographs and no interviews exist because he declined them. He wasn't there for the publicity."https://t.co/c7OsVydOl2
Buscemi was desperate to help those in need after the attack on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, so he donned his fireman's gear and worked alongside his old FDNY company to scour the rubbles for survivors. According to the Facebook post written by Captain Jonathan Lusk of Fresno Fire, California, the actor worked twelve-hour shifts for several days and he made sure that no one would know about his heroic deed until over 10 years later.
Actor Steve Buscemi, a former firefighter, donned his gear and worked at Ground Zero after 9/11. He made no mention of it and actively tried to keep it secret.— 'Radical' Russ Belville (@RadicalRuss) September 11, 2019
So, The Donald must be some boss level ninja or something. pic.twitter.com/JeKkPTNrDp
Very few photographs and no interviews exist because he declined them. He wasn't there for the publicity, wrote Lusk. It was only in September 2013 that it was revealed Buscemi was a part of the 9/11 team. He later commented on his efforts saying that "it was a privilege to be able to do it." "It was great to connect with the firehouse I used to work with and with some of the guys I worked alongside," he added. "And it was enormously helpful for me because while I was working, I didn't really think about it as much, feel it as much."
While it shouldn't come as a surprise, 9/11 wasn't the only event that Buscemi lent a hand. Also not very well known is that in 2012 Brother Buscemi showed up in Breezy Point, NY and quietly assisted in the clean-up efforts of the damage and mass destruction left by Super Storm Sandy, the post read. The actor has also been a strong advocate for firefighters. He even got arrested in 2003 after giving "a speech at a union rally supporting higher wages for firefighters and to stop fire houses from closing."
Let's not forget, when 9/11 happened, all those years ago, former FDNY firefighter and actor Steve Buscemi rejoined his brothers with Engine 55 to help with rescue efforts. He suited up and dug through the rubble with them. #respectfdny#onceabrotheralwaysabrother pic.twitter.com/nyL9QlH455— Carroll Bou (@bou_carroll) September 12, 2019
"Once a brother, always a brother!" added Lusk. "Just so we're clear... this guy is a Badass!!! Tip of the helmet Brother Steve!" Now, this is the perfect example of how you can be famous, but you don't always have to publicize everything you do.