There is heartbreaking news out on Tuesday for “Survivor” fans, as a fan favorite from the “Blood vs. Water” season has died. According to the Associated Press via the Gadsden Times on June 24, an Alabama Warrior Railway worker died in an accident. Sources connected with the show indicate that the employee was Caleb Bankston, the fiance of Colton Cumbie. Late Tuesday night People confirmed the news.
Though Colton Cumbie has always been a controversial “Survivor” player, everybody loved Caleb Bankston from the moment he started the game. That love lasted long past Caleb and Colton's time on the show, and fans of the show are devastated by the news. As the news spreads, many show castaways have shared on social media that they have spoken with Colton or connected with insiders and confirmed that Caleb Bankston has died.
At this point, not much is known about what caused Caleb Bankston's death. The People report indicates that Bankston's train derailed, and surely more details will become available soon. Officials from the company indicate that the team members involved have been offered counseling. There is a “safety stand-down” in place for the railway at this point. In addition, the Federal Railroad Administration and the Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration have been notified.
Many “Survivor” fans initially were holding out hope that these reports weren't true. However, many former players and show insiders took to social media to confirm that sadly, Caleb Bankston has died. Former contestant Sabrina Thompson has shared in the Previously on... Survivor! Facebook page that she has spoken directly to Colton and the devastating news is indeed true. "Cook Islands" contestant Billy Garcia has also tweeted a confirmation posting, "Shocking news: We lost a member of our #Survivor fraternity to a workplace accident. R.I.P. Caleb Bankston! My condolences to his loved ones."
The Survivor Sucks forum Twitter account has also confirmed the news of Caleb's death. The initial post Tuesday evening regarding the loss said, “Multiple sources reporting a tragedy in the #Survivor family. Awaiting actual confirmation, but we may have lost our third alumnus :(.” Just a short while later a new tweet read, “#survivor Season 27 contestant Caleb Bankston has died in a workplace accident. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.”
Fans of the show are flooding to social media to mourn the news and support Caleb's fellow “Survivor” castmates. While Colton has always spurred intense buzz, people are lending their support to him during this tragic time. It seems that Caleb and Colton were slated to get married in October, and people are just stunned over the news that Caleb Bankston has died.
Update: Some additional details regarding the cause of Caleb Bankston's death are beginning to emerge.