She's aggressive and tenacious...
AND she KNOWS how to spear a fish, start a fire and survive on her own.
Gallery:Monica Culpepper Survivor photos
Tampa's own local Survivor: One World contestant, Monica Culpepper shares her experience on the reality show.
Monica is a multi-tasking mother of three. She proved she could handle anything, hunting for food, taking on challenges and surviving on nothing but skill.
She says the hardest part was being separated from her family for 50 days.
She is disappointed she did not win, but she is proud to have been portrayed as herself... honest, hardworking and athletic.
Her kids encouraged her to to be on the show.
Monica says, "So many times you look back and you're disappointed by the things you didn't do, more than you are the things you did do. So this is one of those life experiences that not everyone gets. Only 400 people have played the game Survivor, so I felt like go for it. Give it a shot, see what kind of stamina and grit I have and give it a whirl."
Monica took the training seriously. She and her husband, former NFL player and high profile attorney, Brad Culpepper, spent a few days on Anclote Key learning real survival skills.
Those strong skills came in handy on the show when she had to play the social/mental game while boiling water to drink, hunting for food and building shelter.
"The nights were so tremendously long because as soon as the sun goes down, there are no lights that you click on. So when the sun would set at 6:30 p.m. You just go to bed, that's just my guess because we didn't have a watch, you've got 12 hours that you're just laying there in the shelter on bamboo at 98 pounds and that's quite uncomfortable as well."
HEATHER: "and cold I would think.. along with bugs and snakes?
Yes, so incredibly cold. it was winter in Samoa at the time so obviously you strategically build your shelter on the beach so you have a seabreeze to keep the bugs away, but when you have seabreeze and the incredible rains that we had, it was frigid. We would have 40 mile an hour winds and we went 70 hours straight with rain and we were told by the host Jeff Probst that we had the worst shelter in the history of the show and water was just cascading in."
Monica toughed it out and proved she was stronger than most. She ended up being blindsided by teammates who turned against her.
10 News Anchor Heather Van Nest asked: "So many people were upset by the way Colton betrayed you. What are you going to say to him when you are face to face?
MONICA: "There are people who play the game who are villains and villains in the game. Colton is not only a villain in the game but also a villain in life. We weren't friends before the game... I thought we were friends during the game.
HEATHER: "He called you Momica!"
MONICA,"He really tried, but I don't see us being friends after the game, but I will see him and we have talked and he has apologized and said he made some mistakes but I don't know if a zebra can change its stripes that easily."
Monica says she is really thankful for her life. She is happy and proud to return to her full-time job of being a mother to her three kids.
Bay area fans have applauded her honesty and Monica says she has enjoyed sharing her time in the spotlight, to raise almost $100-thousand dollars for local charities.
**Monica is also up for FAN FAVORITE! If she wins, she says she will donate the money to local charities. Help Monica become the first mom to win this honor! Text 55455, then the number 14 (Monica's number).
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