Steve Rannazzisi admitted this past September that he had previously lied about being in the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, and the comedian made his first public appearance on Tuesday’s The Howard Stern Show on Sirius XM to address the controversy.
“The hurt and the pain and the nervousness that you hear now comes from … because I know what I did was terrible,” Rannazzisi told Stern. “I know that I hurt a lot of people — people that lost people, people that helped people survive. And those are the people that I am truly sorry. I feel awful.”
In a 2009 interview on Marc Maron’s WTF podcast, Rannazzisi said he was working at Merrill Lynch in the World Trade Center’s South Tower when the North Tower was struck. In September 2015, though, he told the truth in a statement: “I was in Manhattan but working in a building in Midtown and I was not at the Trade Center on that day,” he said. “I don’t know why I said this. This was inexcusable. I am truly, truly sorry.”
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“It’s out now and I don’t have to wait and see what’s going to happen or be cautious anymore,” Rannazzisi told Stern Tuesday. “I don’t have to live with the lie anymore. I’m an idiot. I made a terrible mistake, but this is not who I am and I’m going to move on beyond this.”
Rannazzisi’s new comedy special, Breaking Dad, aired on Comedy Central Sept. 19 as originally planned, just days after his confession, and he told Stern he will eventually return to the stage. “I’m just going to go on stage and be myself,” he said. “I’m expecting some people will heckle me.”
Read more from Rannazzisi’s interview over at Stern’s website.