CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — From the woods of West Virginia to a national reality show, a Putnam County native is making a name for himself.

A friend encouraged him to apply for the History Channel show “Alone” where cast members survive with just basics.

More than a decade ago, Hurricane High School graduate Terry Burns decided to leave his job in construction and move to Alaska. He lived in his car while following his passion for the outdoors.
Those skills helped him land a spot on the reality show.

“You know, you don’t start out with any food or water so you are just living life off the land,” Burns said. “It’s exciting. It’s what I do for fun. So it was a great opportunity.”

A friend encouraged him to apply to be on the show.

“It is absolutely impossible for me to articulate how that felt to get the call that you’ve been accepted for one of the ten,” Burns said. “I had a massive giggle fit, and just electrifying, really electrifying, super excited.”

Burns was not able to talk about anything he did while on the show or what the outcome was.

He said he wasn’t even allowed to tell his family he was on the show until recently. He spent weeks leading up to the taping getting ready. The show was recorded in eastern Canada not far from the coast.

“I enjoy the focus and the intensity it brings,” Burns said. “I really enjoy training and that type of thing, so it has just been terrific.”

Season 9 has just started airing. Burns said he was shocked when people recognized him at the airport.

“Some folks came up for pictures, which is wild to me because I haven’t owned a television in 12 years. Nine or 10 months a year, I don’t have access to a cell phone or WiFi. So people recognizing me, it’s pretty interesting. It is fun. I love talking to folks,” he said.

Episodes air on Thursdays on the History Channel.