Born in Detroit, Rupert Boneham moved with his parents at a young age to Indiana where he eventually attended Haworth High School in Kokomo. He then moved to Texas to study nursing at Cisco Junior College and San Angelo University. Boneham currently resides in Indianapolis, where he works as a vocational and clinical mentor for troubled teens. He previously worked as a gravedigger and a bartender.
His hobbies include scuba diving, camping and coin collecting. His favorite sport is racquetball. He describes himself as strong, smart and brave. He is most proud of becoming independent/self-employed and being able to care for his family while not having to live the "Nine-To-Five" world. He believes his competitive advantages on Survivor: Pearl Islands were his ability to be a team player, hunter and gatherer, camper and all-around survivor. These attributes contributed to his being chosen for the "Survivor: All-Stars" competition.
In a surprise twist to the "Survivor: All-Stars" finale, CBS announced a second $1 million giveaway determined by the show's fans, who voted on 18 "Survivor" contestants. More than 38 million viewers voted and, thanks to his legion of fans, lovably scruffy "Survivor" contestant Rupert Boneham is now $1 million richer. Since becoming "Survivor"'s newest and most popular millionaire, Rupert Boneham has been spending more time on the racquetball court.
The mayor of Indianapolis, Bart Peterson, declared June 21 Rupert Day, stating that Rupert represented their city so well, that it was a great honor to claim him as one of their own. Mayor Peterson said that good guys do finish first and that's what happened here in this city.
But Rupert Boneham was a hero in Indianapolis long before he became America's most beloved “Survivor.” For over five years, he mentored troubled teens at the Choices program and, with the skills he taught them, many have turned their lives around. Rupert wrote the program a huge check, saying, “Choices has stood with me for years when I was on my own, doing my own kids' group, and it about bankrupted me. Choices stepped in, helped me out, gave me kids through the Department of Education and the Department of Corrections, and it was a good match-up. And I always said I'd be with them as long as I could. This makes it so I can be with them forever.” And now, Choices is helping Rupert set up his own charity. This reality TV star can deliver real hope to more kids.
Rupert would love to be back on TV and is working on a few different things, mostly parts where he can go out there and be himself.
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