New York City Firefighter Dies Battling Massive Fire at Movie Shoot

March 23, 2018 Updated: March 23, 2018

A New York City firefighter lost his life late Thursday battling a fire that spiraled out of control on the set of a movie shoot.

Michael Davidson of Harlem’s Engine Company 69 was reported missing after other firefighters heard a mayday call from him as he battled the blaze inside the building, reported The New York Post.

Officials soon found Davidson and rushed him to the hospital but he was pronounced dead.

The fire started in the basement of 773 St. Nicholas Ave., as people just outside worked on the set of “Motherless Brooklyn.”

Fire officials said the inferno was too intense.

“They went down the stairs to fight the fire with Davidson as nozzleman,” Daniel Nigro, commissioner of the Fire Department of New York (FDNY), told reporters at Harlem Hospital early Friday.

“The fire was too heavy. They were forced to retreat and as they backed out, he (Davidson) got separated from the rest of the unit. He was found unconscious on the floor and despite the best efforts of the FDNY and EMTs, they were unable to revive him.”

Davidson, 37, had worked for the department for 15 years.

He leaves behind his wife, Eileen, and four daughters.

Firefighting runs in the family. His brother, Eric, is also a fireman in the city, while their father, a retired firefighter, worked for the same engine company as Davidson.

Davidson had been cited for bravery four times in his career, the department said.

“Davidson died serving the people of #NYC and will forever be a hero. We stand with our brothers and sisters at the FDNY as they grieve for their brother and continue to watch over the city,” said the New York City Police Department in a statement.

Eric Phillips, spokesman for Mayor Bill de Blasio, said that he was at the hospital when Davidson’s mother arrived.

“You haven’t heard a scream until you’ve heard the scream of a mother who’s seen her son give his life to protect us,” Phillips said via Twitter. He later deleted the tweet.

“Our city lost a hero tonight. Firefighter Michael R. Davidson was a 15-year veteran of @FDNY. The prayers of 8.5 million New Yorkers are with his wife, his four children and his loved ones,” added de Blasio.


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