Legendary actor Steve Buscemi has penned an essay for Time magazine, recounting his haunting experience of volunteering to assist in clearing out rubble of the 9/11 terrorist attack.
In case you didn’t know, Buscemi was a firefighter back in the early 1980’s, where he was a part of the FDNY’s Engine 55.
At the time he was also hustling to pursue a career in acting.
Buscemi’s Hollywood career certainly kicked off, but tragically it was the 9/11 terrorist attack that saw the actor reunite with his original firefighting unit, where he volunteered for five days, as per Consequence.
Speaking to the Independent, Buscemi revealed just how affected he was and still is by the horrendously life altering attack and that it’s “still a big part” of him.
Buscemi said, “I was only there for like five days, but when I stopped going and tried to just live my life again, it was really, really hard.”
“I was depressed, I was anxious, I couldn’t make a simple decision,” he continued. “All those things. It’s still with me. There are times when I talk about 9/11 and I’m right back there. I start to get choked up and I realize, ah, this is still a big part of me.”
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He continued, “I haven’t experienced any health issues, and I get myself checked out, but definitely… post traumatic stress? Absolutely.”
Buscemi’s essay in Time is absolutely goosebump-inducing and it’s an incredibly noble tribute as a legacy to those who suffer from the aftermath today.
An excerpt from the essay reads: “It actually felt good to be there. I was on the site for less than a week, but it wasn’t until I got home that the magnitude of it all caught up with me.”
“I was already seeing a therapist, and though it was almost impossible to process the enormity of what had happened, just having someone with whom to sit with all the feelings was a consolation. It’s not something first responders usually get. Announcing vulnerability is a hard thing for anyone, but especially for people whose primary identity is as a protector. ”
Buscemi also speaks of Friends of Firefighters, an organisation which was created following 9/11 by a New Yorker named Nancy Carbone. Friends of Firefighters provides free mental health support to current and retired firefighters, as well as to their families.
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