Rudy Boesch, the oldest person to ever play “Survivor,” passed away on November 1 at age 91 following a battle with Alzheimer’s disease. Now many of his former tribe members from “Survivor: Borneo” (when he was 72 years old) and “Survivor: All-Stars” (when he was age 75) are eulogizing their friend on Twitter. Among Rudy’s cast mates who reacted to his death are “Boston” Rob Mariano, who’s currently serving as a mentor on “Survivor: Island of the Idols,” and Richard Hatch, who formed an unlikely bond with Rudy during their two seasons together.
“We lost an original OG ‘Survivor’ legend,” Rob tweeted. “Rudy was always very nice to me. I feel fortunate to have known him and played the game of with him #SurvivorAllStars. Our sincere condolences to his family. Rest In Peace Rudy.” Rob and Rudy appeared together in the eighth season, which brought back so-called “All-Stars” from the first seven cycles of the reality TV show.
Richard remembered, “Ours was an interesting bond, Dear Rudy! You and I helped open minds and undermine prejudices. While your time here has passed, you will remain loved and iconic, dear friend!” The fact that Rudy became best buddies with the openly gay Richard, although “not in a homosexual way,” was one of the highlights of that record-breaking first season.
Like Richard, Jenna Lewis appeared alongside Rudy in both “Borneo” and “All-Stars.” She commented, “My heart hurts — we shared two times on ‘Survivor’ island. I wasn’t his family … but he was mine.”
“All-Stars” cast member Rob Cesternino posted a photo of he and Rudy hiking together. “I heard the news today about my old roommate Rudy Boesch passing away,” he wrote. “While I’m incredibly sad for the Boesch family, I’m so happy for the time that he and I shared and the many, many laughs we had on our adventure. RIP Rudy.”
Ethan Zohn, the winner of “Survivor: Africa” who returned to defend his title in “All-Stars,” tweeted out, “RIP Rudy! You are a legend and the toughest guy I have ever met. I know you’re up there keeping us strong.”
Lex van den Berghe of “All-Stars” had us reaching for the tissues when he remarked, “You were a good friend and true badass Rudy and I’ll always cherish the times we shared. You told me you respected both of my games – coming from you, this meant the world. I hope there’s a hereafter – if there is, I know you’re with Marge, your light. Rest in power old friend.”
As we previously reported, “Survivor” host Jeff Probst announced, “The ‘Survivor’ family has lost a legend. Rudy Boesch passed at the age of 91. He played in the first season of ‘Survivor’ at the age of 72. He is one is the most iconic and adored players of all time. And he served our country as a 45-year Navy SEAL. Rudy is a true American hero.”
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