The stars of the three shows of NBC's One Chicago have a lot of experience by this point in performing epic rescues for primetime, but the actors of Chicago Fire, Chicago P.D., and Chicago Fire aren't first responders in real life. That didn't stop a pair of P.D. and Med stars from jumping into action to perform a real-life rescue, however, and P.D.'s Jesse Lee Soffer has shared the story of that time he and Med's Nick Gehlfuss had a rescue encounter.
Jesse Lee Soffer, who of course has played Jay Halstead for the better part of a decade now on Chicago P.D., appeared on the TV Guide Magazine 2021 Fan Favorites panel for [email protected] When asked about standout fan encounters over the years, Soffer shared a story that involved both him and his on-screen One Chicago brother:
My favorite fan story is actually like a real-life rescue encounter. I was out to dinner with Nick Gehlfuss, who plays my brother on Chicago Med, and we were walking home from dinner and we heard screeching tires behind us, like a block away. And they had been digging for the plumbing of a building, there was like a 10-foot ditch in front of a building on a main street in Chicago. And a car had rolled into it on its side, and it was really scary. It was a bad accident. They had hit another car and rolled in, and Nick and I – he plays a doctor on Chicago Med – we ran and he was like ‘What are we doing?’ And I was like, ‘We go, we have to go.’ And we sprang into action. We jump into the ditch and we pulled this woman out. The car was on its side, we pulled her out of the driver’s side window, basically, and got her up.
The Halstead brothers to the rescue! The actors who play Detective Jay Halstead and Dr. Will Halstead in One Chicago go above and beyond to save lives on screen, but jumping into ditches to perform rescues in real life isn't part of their scripted job descriptions! Fortunately, it sounds like Nick Gehlfuss didn't actually start trying to administer emergency aid to the woman like an actual doctor and Jesse Lee Soffer didn't start trying to manage the scene like an actual cop, but an action-packed good deed that maybe most people wouldn't have tried.
Of course, with Chicago P.D. and Chicago Med not only filming in Chicago, but also as major hit shows with passionate fanbases, the odds weren't too shabby that the woman they were rescuing would be a One Chicago fan. Jesse Lee Soffer continued telling the story to share just what it's like for somebody to find themselves rescued by actors who play rescuers in primetime:
And she sat there, and she was really rattled, and she looked at him, and she goes ‘You’re – but wait – you’re–’. And then I came over and I was like, ‘Ma’am, don’t worry, fire and ambulance is on the way. Are you okay?’ And she was like ‘Aaah!’ It was like a weird meta experience for her that like the Halstead brothers were saving her life.
If only there was a third Halstead brother who starred in Chicago Fire who could have completed the trifecta with Jesse Lee Soffer and Nick Gehlfuss! This particular fan experience may not have been fun for the woman at the beginning when her life was in danger, but the story comes to a pretty fun ending.
Her discovery that the Halstead brothers came to her rescue – or at least the actors who play them on TV – must have made the incident a little less terrible! Honestly, though, I would probably think that I'd bonked my head pretty hard and hallucinated myself in One Chicago's world if I was pulled out of a car crash and saw what looked like Jay and Will Halstead on the scene!
Hopefully Jee Lee Soffer and Nick Gehlfuss don't happen upon the scenes of real-life accidents on a regular basis, and in fact they'll be called back to performing their on-screen heroics now that the fall TV season is on the way. Soffer revealed recently that filming on Chicago P.D. Season 9 has already begun, and Chicago Med announced some big casting additions that followed the confirmation of which stars are returning for Season 7.
Tune in to NBC on Wednesday, September 22 at 8 p.m. ET for the return of One Chicago for the 2021-2022 TV season, starting with Chicago Med at 8 p.m., continuing with Chicago Fire at 9 p.m., and finishing up with Jesse Lee Soffer's Chicago P.D. at 10 p.m. For more of what's on the way when the weather starts to cool, swing by our 2021 fall TV premiere schedule for what's coming and when to check it out!