In Memoriam: Keith A. Glascoe

Keith Glascoe in The Professional

“… Rest peacefully, my Brother, I just came back from a 3 yr long assignment in Iraq, and I dare to say that Justice has been served. Farewell, my Friend, Farewell…” – Damir [Palladium, Tunnel, Club USA]


The following is an excerpt from PX This:

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 17, 2001. 12:15PM

We got terrible news. A friend that B used to work with, “Big Keith,” is missing.

Such a nice guy, big and friendly and cute and good natured and happy. He’s a firefighter and I think nearly his entire squad is gone.

The last time I saw Big Keith was at Sugar in December, and I remember I asked him if he was still thinking about joining the fire department and he replied “I’m IN the fire department!”— so we chatted like wow how fast time flies, the last time I had seen him he was just talking about thinking about joining.

And he bought me a cup of coffee another night too and I felt weird, I wasn’t sure which was more insulting— to offer him money for it or not. I didn’t know the protocol, back at the Gatien’s nobody offered money, they just went and got it the next time.

Big Keith was in the movie The Professional and he was great in it really, even though it was a small role. He played Benny (one of the corrupt cops) and he has one awesome scene where he is standing in the hallway with his gun drawn, nervous and shaking and sweating.

Actually he is so remarkable I mentioned him in “The Ministry of Speed” too, and I guess it’s silly but I liked to imagine my film would actually get made one day and Keith could play one of the doormen and it would actually be the real him they were referring to in the dialogue. Something like that.

I remember one time Keith and I were chatting outside Naked Lunch and I was recounting to him how I’d taped The Professional on the VCR and then I realized “oh whoops you probably don’t want to hear that do you?” thinking it was bad I had videotaped it instead of paying to see it in a theatre. And eeheee he was cute he insisted “No! HBO is good, I’ll take HBO!”

And B says his wife is in denial like she just expects him to come walking in the door any second and my God who can blame her? Because he was just so big and able and strong it seemed like nothing could ever take him down.

Oh my God knock on wood but if something like that were to happen to B, I would be the exact same way, I would have to see it with my own two eyes.

It’s just not the way things are supposed to be.

B was really upset when he told me.

I remember all the funny stories he used to tell about working the door at Naked Lunch how Keith would just make him laugh and laugh all night long.

Even though B hated doorkeeping so much I know he looks back fondly and proudly because of all the good guys he knows because of it.

Firefighter Keith Glascoe from Engine 21 is among the missing in the World Trade Center attack on Tuesday. This photo is on display at the station where they do duty Wednesday Sept 19, 2001. Newsday photo by J. Conrad Williams Jr.

And even though I don’t really want to share this with those people, I feel like I want to say something to the Project Greenlighters, all those movie lovers, like they should go out and buy The Professional and tell all their friends, I just want everyone to know when they watch that movie they should look out for him and they can see how great he was and be proud for him he is such a hero.

But I am afraid it will just come out stupid or corny or something.


This memoriam was originally published on September 11, 2013 at (now archived). All the comments below have been replicated exactly as they appear beneath the original post.

18 thoughts on “In Memoriam: Keith A. Glascoe”

  1. Abbe, I agree with all the amazon reviews that said that all the hilarious stuff about restaurants wasn’t even the best part of your book.

    This part was definitely one of my favorites.

  2. Wow. It’s been a long time. I knew Keith. We had several things in common. We worked security for N.Y’s most popular clubs and we were fellow thespians. It’s was a shock to just find out about Keith. You know, you get caught up in your own life and time just flies by. A stern and swift reminder to CHERISH each moment given to you by the all mighty God with your loved ones and friends. He was quite a Gent. I feel privilieged and honered to have known him. My prayers and condolences to his loved ones. You are missed buddy.

  3. I just got an email about this, so I am going to post all the comments that were on Facebook in case anyone else finds this thread, so they can also see all the nice thoughts that people have expressed.

  4. OMG! So sad. The Professional is an all time favorite. I remember the nite we ALL went to see that movie. We had soooo much fun. RIP Big K

  5. i remember running into him on the 1 train (so vivid of a memory), right after the movie was released. he stayed so sweet and so humble, even as people crowded around him as we waited in the station. not knowing all those years prior that he was interested in acting, i was so happy for his success. it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. and we couldn’t have lost a much nicer guy either. what an amazing example of a beautiful person.
    while 9/11 was such an evil tragedy, knowing keith left us while helping others, is a bitter sweet sadness for me.

  6. Sooo many nights, years, that we shared at “The Big Kahuna”, “Tattoo’s?” and a bunch of other NY Top clubs…
    It is not a Friendship that developed between us but more like a Brotherhood… I always felt safe when he was watching my back, and it was quite often… And I am thankful to Frank Giresi who always teamed us up, so I got to know Keith very well. He was a Gentle Giant! Big Heart, and always there to help You with anything…
    Rest peacefully, my Brother, I just came back from 3 yr long assignment in Iraq, and I dare to say that Justice has been served.
    Farewell, my Friend, Farewell…

  7. I Believe BIG Keith is in HEAVEN where he should be……… Still LOVE u HOMIE…..

  8. Rest in Peace and I hope & Pray that Keith’s family is blessed and doing ok. Vic The tunnel , MARS …

  9. We all miss you very much, Keith. I know you are resting in peace.

    Until we meet again.

    I remain,
    your cousin,
    Crystal M. Broomes-Deane

  10. Thinking of you once again. I miss you my friend. Peace and love to your family, Veronica, and your kids. Chris

  11. Hey I just watched Leon The Professional for the first time yesterday and for some reason I wanted to find out more about this actor, he stood out to me. I learned that he died a hero.

  12. My prayers go out to the family …from our Time at Woodward school to the days we spent playing football or watching the Golden Knights play at Boys high field as pre teens..i will always remember you as a great personality with a big grin/smile on his face…R.I.P my friend

  13. wow I was just thinking about Keith being you know so close to September 11th and I read this and you touched my heart Keith was one of my best best friends we worked at naked lunch we worked uptown before that at this little joint called Aurora and we became really really super close and the man I don’t even have enough room or words to say what i feel about Keith. I’ll just leave you with this thank you for you’re touching obit and that she’s became one of the best friends that I’ve ever had in my life and he holds a place in my heart forever and I have a much love for Veronica his wife and that’s about it thank you… big frankie, naked lunch

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