Melanie Rauscher, 'Naked and Afraid' Alum, Found Dead at 35 While Dog Sitting

This video is unavailable because we were unable to load a message from our sponsors.

If you are using ad-blocking software, please disable it and reload the page.

A two-time Naked and Afraid contestant has been found dead.

Melanie Rauscher, who appeared on the Discovery Channel reality series in 2017 and its spin-off Naked and Afraid XL the following year, was found dead on July 17, the Prescott Police Department confirmed in a press release. She was 35 years old. 

According to police, Arizona residents found Rauscher, their dog sitter, dead on the bed of their guest room after they came home. Officers also saw two cans of computer duster close to Rauscher's body, but a cause of death has not yet been determined and the circumstances of her death are being investigated. 

Prior to her stints on reality TV, Rauscher served in the United States Navy during the Iraq War and was working at the Prescott VA Medical Center at the time of her death, an obituary stated.

"She was an avid outdoor enthusiast who loved nature and all creatures big and small. Melanie loved camping and hiking and finding adventure wherever she could. Melanie also had a passion for challenging herself which led her to participate on Naked & Afraid and XL," the obituary read. "Mel was a passionate athlete and deeply involved in local adult leagues. She was a diehard Eagles fan. She was a natural comedian, and her wit was unmatched. Melanie's boisterous laugh will echo in the hearts and minds of her loved ones forever."

Fellow Naked and Afraid contestant Jeremy McCaa mounted the loss of Rauscher on social media. In a tribute shared to Facebook, he wrote, "She came into my life in a way I can’t explain. We had such a chemistry on the show and it blossomed into a friendship that goes beyond words could describe. Her laughter was one of a kind. Her friendship was amazing. Even tho we wasn’t blood, we was family. I could always count on her. We had so many moments when we would just be there for each other. She was my swamp wife, a best friend, a strong woman, an amazing person and I’ll always cherish our moments together. You’re gone to soon and taken from us to early. You’ll always be my Mel. I love you and I’ll see you again one day. The world lost an amazing person. Please keep her family and friends in your prayers."

Concluded McCaa, "See you again my Queen."


Bob Rafelson, ‘Five Easy Pieces’ Director, Dead at 89

Shonka Dukureh, Big Mama Thornton in 'Elvis,' Dead at 44

Nolan Neal, 'The Voice,' 'America's Got Talent' Contestant, Dead at 41

Mickey Rooney Jr., Original Mouseketeer & Musician, Dead at 77

Related Gallery