A Hurricane Sandy hero who helped usher more than 200 stranded victims to safety is now homeless and leaning on the very community he helped rescue.

As the superstorm tore through Pete Vadola’s Staten Island community in October, the father of three was relieved his home survived, but felt it was his duty to help those who weren’t as fortunate. After stumbling upon a motorboat in the middle of the flooded streets, Vadola, 28, borrowed the vehicle and waded through Midland Beach to transport as many people as he possibly could to safety, CBS reported.

pete vadola

“Took my mother, my father, my sisters, me, my dog, my wife -- everybody. Took anybody they could,” Anthony Battaglia, a Staten Island resident who was grateful for Vadola’s help, told CBS. “This whole neighborhood they went to, anywhere they could get people screaming at them through windows -- ‘Come back, I’m pregnant.’”

But eight months after Sandy decimated Staten Island, Vadola is now facing a similar grief to that of his neighbors. His home caught on fire after he and his wife returned from vacation two weeks ago and the young family of five is now homeless, the New York Daily News reported.

pete vadola

“Thank God no one was hurt, but now I know how all my displaced neighbors felt after Sandy,” Vadola, who’s now staying with his parents, told the paper. “Fate was laying for me, man. I dodged the storm but the fire got me.”

Vadola, who was honored along with two other storm heroes at a Knicks game in November, told the Daily News that he has insurance and isn’t looking for handouts. But his appreciative community has already stepped up to help their local savior.

“Pete Vadola saved our lives,” Kelly Lotz, a neighbor, told the Daily News. “He was a hero who saved over 200 people.”

Also on HuffPost:

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  • Michael Bloomberg

    New York Mayor Bloomberg took all the major precautions to keep New Yorkers safe. He ordered 3,750,000 people to vacate the low-lying areas across the five boroughs and ordered a complete shutdown of the mass transit system well before the storm even hit. According to the New York Times, he even calmly dealt with a huge <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/30/nyregion/crane-accident-at-one57-in-midtown.html?_r=0">crane poised to collapse </a>over a luxury skyscraper.

  • Power Workers

    While most people were advised to evacuate from Sandy's path of destruction, <a href="http://www.thedailybeast.com/galleries/2012/10/30/hurricane-sandy-heroes-from-coast-guard-rescuers-to-red-cross-volunteers-photos.html?huff_e_query=%28red+cross+volunteers%29+%7C+%28shipwrecked+sailors%29+%7C+%28mayor+bloomberg%29+%7C+%28u+s+news%29&huff_e_sorting=recency#a4efc0e0-35ad-42d8-9b29-8aca40743719">power workers knowingly went into the thick of things</a>. According to the Daily Beast, more than 500 power workers came up from Alabama to assist in recovery efforts, and at least 150 came from the West Coast to help restore power in New York.

  • Cory Booker

    Newark Mayor Booker deployed a team in Newark to ensure that the homeless were able to find shelter at an emergency base on Sussex Avenue.

  • Cory Booker

    Newark Mayor Booker deployed a team in Newark to ensure that the homeless were able to find shelter at an emergency base on Sussex Avenue.

  • U.S. Coast Guard

    The crew of the HMS Bounty was forced to abandon ship as Hurricane Sandy slowly claimed the vessel. According to the Huffington Post, "by the time the first rescue helicopter arrived, all that was visible of <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/29/hms-bounty-pirates-of-the-caribbean-hurricane-sandy_n_2037079.html">the replica 18th-century sailing vessel</a> was a strobe light atop the ship's submerged masts." The Coast Guard rescued 14 crew members by helicopter Monday.

  • Martin O'Malley

    Maryand Gov. O'Malley was determined not to let his state lose power. He preemptively told his state's utility providers to get help before the storm hits so they can be prepared. More than 3,000 emergency workers from other states have flooded in to help Pepco, the power company which serves both D.C. and Maryland. According to First Coast News, O'Malley also <a href="http://www.firstcoastnews.com/weather/article/279825/29/Maryland-Gov-Declares-State-Of-Emergency-before-Hurricane-Sandy">declared a state of emergency</a> even before the storm hit allowing the state the ability to activate the Maryland National Guard and provide assistance to local emergency centers.

  • Indiana Red Cross Volunteers

    As the East coast scrambled to prepare and respond to the destruction from Sandy, a crew of Indiana residents began a pilgrimage eastward to help. According to the Daily Beast, <a href="http://www.thedailybeast.com/galleries/2012/10/30/hurricane-sandy-heroes-from-coast-guard-rescuers-to-red-cross-volunteers-photos.html?huff_e_query=%28red+cross+volunteers%29+%7C+%28shipwrecked+sailors%29+%7C+%28mayor+bloomberg%29+%7C+%28u+s+news%29&huff_e_sorting=recency#142b35af-f98a-41af-9044-bc1a7753ef6c">American Red Cross volunteers based in Indiana</a> journeyed late last week to Harrisburg, Penn., where they began staging rescue efforts for the storm that was to come in the next few days.

  • This New Jersey Resident

    After getting hit by a rogue wave on Monmouth Beach, New Jersey, this poor <a href="http://www.kxan.com/dpp/news/strange/deer-caught-in-hurricane-sandy-surf-nd12">deer got swept out to sea</a> in the turbulent currents caused by Hurricane Sandy. A man who was also on the beach at the time of the wave was able to rescue the deer from the water, reported KXAN. It's suffering a broken leg, but is expected to recover in the custody of animal control.

  • Rich Eighme

    A Republican running for the General Assembly, Eighme, spent much of Sunday <a href="http://www.norwichbulletin.com/news/x1440167833/HURRICANE-SANDY-General-Assembly-candidate-hands-out-flashlights#axzz2AixswOI3">walking door to door handing out campaign flashlights</a> in preparation for Hurricane Sandy. A resident of Griswold, Conn., told the Norwich Bulletin that he focused on back roads that could possible lose power within the 45th District, which includes Griswold, Lisbon, Plainfield, Sterling and Voluntown.

  • The Good Samaritan New York Cabbie

    According to Curbed, one <a href="http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2012/10/30/one57_crane_collapse_sends_neighbors_fleeing_midtown.php">good samaritan New York cab driver</a> was "ferrying refugees all over the place," including several from the Parker Meridien where a crane dangled precariously over the building forcing residents to evacuate.

  • The Staff at New York University's Langone Medical Center

    According to the Atlantic Wire, when the power failed at New York University's Langone Medical Center, "approximately 1,000 hospital staffers (doctors, nurses, residents, and medical students), along with firefighters and police officers,<a href="http://www.theatlanticwire.com/national/2012/10/heroes-hurricane/58498/?huff_e_query=%28hurricane+national%29+%7C+%28heroes%29+%7C+%28new+york+city%29+%7C+%28faith%29&huff_e_sorting=recency"> carried 260 patients</a> down 15 flights of stairs, in the dark, with flashlights, to ambulances that transported them to other area hospitals."

  • Vern Gillmore

    According to the Huffington Post, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/29/hurricane-sandy-vern-gillmore-utah_n_2038607.html?ir=Impact">the 70-year-old Utah man</a> has been volunteering with his American Red Cross chapter for three years and was deployed Monday to help a small portion of some 50 million people who could be affected by the storm.

  • Breezy Point Firefighters

    According to the Huffington Post, a huge fire destroyed 80 to 100 houses in a flooded beachfront neighborhood in New York on Tuesday. More than <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/30/breezy-point-fire_n_2043071.html">190 firefighters were able to contain the blaze</a> but were still putting out pockets of fire more than nine hours after it began. According to HuffPost, "Firefighters said that the water was chest high on the street, and they had to use a boat to make rescues. They said in one apartment home, about 25 people were trapped in an upstairs unit, and the two-story home next door was ablaze and setting fire to the apartment's roof. Firefighters climbed an awning to get to the trapped people and took them downstairs to a boat in the street."

  • Heroic New Jersey Dump Truck Driver

    According to NewJersey.com, thousands of Little Ferry and Moonachie residents were rescued from flooded homes this morning. While most residents were rescued by the National Guard, sisters Lori Turner and Sharon Cardia along with their families were rescued by an <a href="http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012/10/thousands_rescued_from_bergen.html">anonymous good samaritan dump truck driver</a>.

  • New York Scuba Rescue Team

    Diane Sawyer talks to Terrance Sullivan about the incredible scuba response team.

  • Spencer Service

    According to Patch, a Flatbush, New York <a href="http://windsorterrace.patch.com/articles/hurri-kittens#c">man walked more than a mile in the face of Hurricane Sandy to save a litter of newborn kittens from the storm</a>. As the rain began to fall and the wind picked up speed, Service and his roommate headed downstairs, intending to shelter the fledgling feline family under a cardboard box. Service, however, didn't feel he had done enough to help the soaked kittens. He grabbed a cat carrier from his apartment, lined the bottom with t-shirts, and prepared to embark on the trek to a rescue facility, nearly two miles away from his Flatbush home, where he delivered the kittens unharmed. Note: this is not an actual photograph of the cats.