HILLSDALE, N.J. – Danny Aiello III, a veteran stuntman and stunt coordinator and a son of the actor Danny Aiello, died Saturday at his home in Hillsdale. He was 53.

The cause was pancreatic cancer, said a sister-in-law, Debbra Aiello.

The Bronx-born Aiello had scores of credits as a stunt coordinator, including the TV firefighter drama “Rescue Me,” the TV soap operas “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” and the yet-to-be-released movie “Sex and the City 2.”

He was the body double for his father in the 1989 Spike Lee movie “Do the Right Thing.”

The elder Danny Aiello told Newsday in 1992 that he couldn’t bear to watch his son perform stunts during filming.

“I let him do it,” the Oscar-nominated actor said. “He tells me, ‘Dad, this is what I do and if you don’t let me have this job it will go to someone else’s son.’“

In the same article, Danny Aiello III reflected on his dangerous line of work. “You’d better be one of the 10 best if you want to make a living at it,” he said.

“He was fearless,” said his friend Richard Greifinger, of Summit, N.J.. “He was a big, strapping guy, but he had a heart of gold.”

Aiello also had acting credits and directed his father in the 1999 feature film “18 Shades of Dust,” about a hit man’s last 12 hours.

He also directed episodes of the television series “Dellaventura” and “The Untouchables.”

Aiello is survived by his wife of nine years, Cindy; daughters Dawn and Allison; his parents, Danny and Sandra; two brothers, Rick and Jaime, and a sister, Stacey Aiello.


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