I came from a fresh install from a daily spin of gnome. I upgraded, needed more features in my kernel for usb tethering resulting in a kernel rebuild and, rebooted. This resulted with no wireless card shown. I looked in dmesg and saw
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brcm80211: module is from the staging directory, the quality is unknown, you have been warned.
brcm80211 0000:02:00.0: PCI INT A -> GSI 16 (level, low) -> IRQ 16
brcm80211 0000:02:00.0: setting latency timer to 64
brcm80211: fail to load firmware brcm/bcm43xx-0.fw
brcm80211: Failed to find firmware usually in /lib/firmware/brcm
brcm80211 0000:02:00.0: PCI INT A disabled
brcm80211: wl_pci_probe: wl_attach failed!
I found bug relating to the issue from gentoo. I used portage to install "sys-kernel/linux-firmware" since equo did not supply the same files in the package "sys-kernel/linux-firmwares-2.6.38".