Eagle Scout hero from Amtrak derailment appears on Fox’s ‘Spin the Wheel’

Fox needed a hero, and so the TV network took the most logical action. It called on an Eagle Scout.

For the premiere of the new game show Spin the Wheel, Fox selected a contestant they knew home viewers would root for. Someone with a story so compelling that you couldn’t help but want that person to win heaps of cash.

They selected Daniel Konzelman, an Eagle Scout from Troop 604 of Eatonville, Wash., part of the Pacific Harbors Council.

Daniel appeared in the June 20 pilot episode of Spin the Wheel, and his status as an Eagle Scout was announced right from the start.

“Who better to get a shot at $23 million than this selfless Eagle Scout hero?” the host Dax Shepard asked.

Bryan on Scouting readers might recognize Daniel’s name. He was one of the first people on the scene of a December 2017 train derailment in Washington state. Without hesitation, he jumped into action, making his way through the mangled cars of the train and saving at least 15 people.

We covered the incident right after it happened, and my colleague Michael Freeman wrote about the entire Konzelman family in this excellent piece posted a couple of weeks after the derailment.

“I didn’t see anybody there helping,” Daniel told Freeman. “In a lot of ways, it was instinctual.”

You can watch Daniel’s Spin the Wheel episode online, through the Fox app or through Hulu (subscription required).

Spoilers below … 

So, how did Daniel do?

Daniel correctly answered several trivia questions throughout the episode. For example:

A spoonful of sugar — specifically, common table sugar — goes by which of these names?

  • A: Sucrose
  • B: Cellulose
  • C. Dextrose
  • D. Ribose

Daniel knew the correct answer was A, sucrose.

Throughout the show, Daniel was paired with his younger brother Darien, also an Eagle Scout. Darien sat in an isolation booth and secretly decided how much money to risk on each question or spin of the wheel.

Daniel answered the questions, but Darien decided whether to play it safe or go for more cash.

A little over halfway through the episode, Daniel had amassed an incredible sum of $2,070,434.

At that point, Daniel had to spin the wheel four more times. Each spin came with a chance to add to or subtract from that total. But each spin also came with a 13% chance of landing on what was basically the “bankrupt” wedge in Wheel of Fortune. Had he landed on bankrupt at any point, Daniel would’ve gone home with nothing.

After each of Daniel’s spins, Darien had the chance to accept an offer to walk away (kind of like the banker’s offer in Deal or No Deal). Daniel wouldn’t know whether Darien accepted one of the offers until the very end.

Daniel didn’t have great luck with the wheel, landing on several spaces that subtracted from his total. After the four spins, Daniel’s bank had dropped to $1,370,434.

But then it was time for the big reveal. Did Darien accept any one of the four walk-away offers, or did he reject each one? If Darien chose to refuse all four offers, Daniel was leaving a millionaire.

With dramatic music pulsing, Darien told Daniel that he “bailed out at $195,318.”

Darien had taken the second offer. Despite learning he had lost more than $1 million, Daniel gave his brother a big smile.

“Dude, I’m so proud of you,” Daniel said. “I think you made the right decision.”

Sure, a Scout is brave. But a Scout is thrifty, too.

About Bryan Wendell 3281 Articles
Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is the founder of Bryan on Scouting and a contributing writer.