The season premiere of ‘Survivor: David Vs. Goliath’ saw Pat Cusack getting medically evacuated after a freak accident left him in severe pain. In our EXCLUSIVE interview, Pat reveals how he’s doing today and MUCH more.
Pat Cusack was sent home from Survivor: David Vs. Goliath during the very first episode on Sept. 26 in a heartbreaking fashion — a medical evacuation that was out of his control. While the tribe members were being transported by boat from the immunity challenge back to camp, the waters were extremely rough, and Pat was tossed around. He landed wrong on his back, and was left in excruciating pain as doctors assessed him. Although Pat begged to stay in the game, the doctors confirmed it was strictly too risky, and he was transported to a hospital to be checked further.
Luckily, all these months later, Pat is doing okay. “I’m good, my health is good,” he told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY after the episode aired. “I’ve been cleared by my doctors. It was very painful when it happened. It was very scary, obviously, and it was emotional. I was ripped from the game by circumstances other than being voted out or beyond anyone’s control. It was very emotional.” When he got to the hospital, Pat found out that he compressed his spine, which caused a burst bursa sac between his second and third vertebrae.
“I have no recollection of anything from the time the accident happened on the boat until the time I was in a helicopter on the way to the hospital,” Pat explained. “As everyone saw it last night, that’s all I know, too. It was very scary to watch last night for myself because I don’t have any recollection.” Although he doesn’t remember it, footage during the episode showed Pat begging to stay in the game, despite the severe pain. However, it was simply not safe for him to continue and not get checked out further.
Before the injury, it seemed like you may have been rubbing some tribe members the wrong way at camp – did you have any idea that that was their perception of you? I didn’t! I thought everybody was taking me in with open arms. Here I am, busting my hump to give them a home, and unbeknownst to me, being in that leadership role that I kind of forged myself into was also putting a target on my back. In hindsight, I wasn’t thinking about that. I didn’t see myself coming off as bossy and directive. In my every day life, I get it done. If there’s people on a job site with me and I see that they’re not contributing to the cause, I speak up and I say something. At the time, I wasn’t thinking that by me giving the comfort of this awesome shelter that they would have flipped it to me being bossy or pushy. But taht’s part of this game and that’s where the social politics come into play in this game.
What was your plan for tribal, if you hadn’t gotten evacuated? From what I thought when I was on the island, I had a solid group — myself, Carl, Lyrsa and Jess. We needed the numbers, so we were going to puppeteer the two “nerds,” Gabby and Christian, and I was pretty confident in what we had working. Nick was going to go home. If the voting had happened and we got to tribal, there’s no doubt in my mind that it wouldn’t have been my torch that was snuffed.