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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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He’s ‘Tough as Nails’: Spokane drywaller Danny Moody finishes runner-up on CBS competition

UPDATED: Sat., Sept. 5, 2020

The nightmares returned for Danny Moody when CBS aired “Tough as Nails” over the summer. The entertaining reality TV competition, which pitted 12 gritty, driven grinders for a grand prize of $200,000 and a Ford Super Duty truck, aired its finale Wednesday evening.

The top prize appeared to be within reach for the amiable “Tough as Nails” contestant who installs drywall throughout Spokane. Moody, a married father of four children, won three of the 10 contests and was in position to take the crown.

However, Moody, 33, had an issue sawing a block of wood while making a step, and he finished as a runner-up with a consolation prize of $18,000 and considerable screen time.

“For a month after we did the show, I kept having these dreams,” Moody said while calling from his home in Newport, Washington. “It started in February when I came back (from Los Angeles) after we were done taping. I would go to bed thinking about everything that happened, have the dreams and wake up thinking about it again. I just couldn’t let it go for a solid month. When the shows aired (starting in July), the dreams started happening again.”

It wasn’t just about the cash and the new vehicle. Moody has always been competitive going back to his days as a wrestler from childhood to adulthood.

“I want to win at everything I do,” Moody said.

Moody has already won over his 6-year-old son, Elijah, who gave his dad a big thumbs-up after watching the finale.

“Elijah said, ‘It’s all right, Dad. You worked really hard,’ ” Moody said.

The tenacity displayed by Moody was impressive. The family man gave it his all with each competition.

“I had so much fun on the show and developed some friendships along the way,” Moody said. “I wish I won it, but I had a great time. It was a challenge, but I did pretty well. I know TV shows make things seem more real than they are. They made me look like I was wiped out at times. The point I’m making is that I was dog tired, but I still had something left in the tank when I was out there trying to win.”

Moody has plenty to be proud of since he fared well each week tackling work on job sites, which tested his strength, endurance and mental toughness as an individual or team member.

Moody won the “Mind Over Matter” challenge, which required contestants to break a slab of concrete into pieces with a sledgehammer and fit them through a small opening.

“It wasn’t easy, but I was up for whatever they threw at me,” Moody said. “At the beginning of the season, they said there would be no doubt who would be the toughest, and I wondered how would they determine that. Me and Murph (“Tough as Nails” champion Kelly Murphy) had a conversation about it.

“My goal was to win every single competition. I went in with this underdog mentality. I’m just this little guy from Spokane. But after a while, I felt the competition was mine to lose. I never placed third in any competition. I was always first or second.”

Moody is looking at the bright side of his surreal adventure.

“I’m thrilled to have been part of it,” Moody said. “A friend from Montana found out about ‘Tough as Nails’ last year and thought the reality show would be right for me. It was perfect for me.”

In March 2019, Moody interviewed via teleconference with producer/host of “Tough as Nails” Phil Keoghan and auditioned in Las Vegas before being selected as a contestant.

“The experience was amazing,” Moody said. “I loved that there was no backstabbing or that you couldn’t be voted off like with ‘Survivor.’ Looking back, it was a great experience competing and even watching with my family. With the exception of my wife and dad, who were with me (in Los Angeles), nobody else knew what would happen. So there was a lot of hootin’ and hollerin’ with each episode at home. There was some sad voices when the last show aired, but it’s all right. It was a good experience overall.”

If you google “Danny Moody,” his vocation, which excites the Riverside High School alum, is now actor.

“That’s so cool since I would love to act,” Moody said. “Acting was one of my childhood dreams. We’ll see what happens. I’ve looked into other TV opportunities.”

Meanwhile, Moody is available for drywall anywhere in the area.

“The day after I got back from Los Angeles in February, I was back on the job,” Moody said. “This is what I do, and I’m proud of it.”

Moody and Sons, led by his father, Allen Moody, 57, will always be there for the third-generation drywall expert.

If a TV career doesn’t pan out, Moody has plenty to fall back on with his job and family, which also includes his wife, Kelly, 30, and children Lena, 4, Davie Jo, 2, and Remi Marie, 1.

“My family means everything to me,” Moody said. “My joke on the show was that I have a blue-collar dad body. My job gave me my guns, and my kids gave me my gut. I play with them instead of working out. At least I cut down from two bowls of ice cream to one bowl.”

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