Ralph Kiser, ‘Survivor: Redemption Island’ Contestant, Dies at 56

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Ralph Kiser, a contestant on the 22nd season of “Survivor,” died on Wednesday morning after suffering a heart attack, according to several media reports. He was 56.

Michael Allbright shared the news in a Facebook post on Wednesday: “I have some unfortunate news for the ‘Survivor’ community. Ralph Kiser passed away unexpectedly from a heart attack this morning. His brother Gilbert messaged me this morning to let the ‘Survivor’ community know.”

Kiser applied for “Survivor” several times before being cast on 2010’s “Redemption Island,” which combined past contestants with new players. “I’ve wanted to be on the show for years and knew one day I’d get my chance. I want to be a hometown hero for the folks back home!,” he said in his official CBS bio, referring to his home town of Lebanon, Virginia.

He ended the season in eighth place, telling People after his exit,” It was the time of my life. It was a dream come true for a man like me to be in Nicaragua and playing a game to be on television. What does that happen to anyone? Never, that’s when. I’d do it again over and over.”

Mike Bloom, who has a podcast dedicated to “Survivor,” paid tribute to Kiser on Twitter, calling him “one of the very few lights in a very dark season.”

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