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Joseph "Joe" Mena is a contestant from Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers.

Joe was known for his aggressive gameplay and behavior, which rubbed people the wrong way on multiple occasions. He managed to find two Hidden Immunity Idols, and successfully play one idol. At the start of the merge, Joe found himself on the wrong side of the numbers, and became a target. Knowing he was a target, he started irritating the majority alliance members with a goal of them seeing him as an easy "goat" to take to the end. While this strategy seemed to work, it soon wore out, and he was voted out at the final eight for being a major threat.


Retrieved from

Age: 34
Hometown: Bronx, N.Y.
Current Residence: Tolland, Conn.
Occupation: Probation Officer
Hobbies: Working out, playing video games (fantasy football), and playing sports (flag football).
Pet peeves: My biggest pet peeve is that fake energetic, fake smile, person that we all know. Also, someone who does not take responsibility for their actions, and is constantly giving excuses. Let's not forget that individual that must have one up on you.
Three words to describe you: Real, confident, and energetic.
What's your personal claim to fame? Obtaining my degree. This is something I'm proud of because it has given me the opportunity to secure my career and that has given me the lifestyle where I have the ability to provide my children with their wants, needs, and a lovely home that they can call their own. Without my degree, I wouldn't have been able to accomplish this.
Who or what is your inspiration in life? A hero is someone who is noble and will not let you down. My sisters are my heroes—they are noble, loyal, and love me unconditionally.
If you could have three things on the island, what would they be and why? Me, myself, and a picture of my children. I don't think I would need anything but a picture of my children. A picture would provide me with a tangible image of them instead of just a mental image.
Which Survivor contestant are you most like? Tony Vlachos' understanding of how to manipulate others, Mike Holloway's "ball to the walls" attitude, and Jeremy Collins' ability to stay true to himself.
What's your reason for being on Survivor? Mo money baby! Of course the million dollars. I play "survivor" 40 hours a week at work. It would take me 10 plus years to earn a million dollars at my current work rate. Why not speed up the process and make a million in six weeks? It's a no brainer. In addition, I always tell my son that he needs to give 100 percent in everything he does. I'm constantly telling him "go hard or go home." I just want him to see that what I preach, I also apply to myself.
Why do you think you'll "survive" Survivor? I can relate to people from all paths of life, I work in a diverse community with diverse backgrounds in age, religion, and social status. I can converse with anyone about anything. With these stories, I'll be able to manipulate individuals and my surroundings. I'm a likable, outspoken, and natural in most things I do. Nothing I do feels forced or uncomfortable. I'm well aware of my strengths and weaknesses. I'm not going to Survivor for vacation or fame. I'm not going to be away from my children for six weeks and come back empty handed. I can win this and I am confident I can.[2]


Originally placed on the Soko tribe for his profession as a probation officer, Joe called out Mike Zahalsky for having a Hidden Immunity Idol, putting a target on the latter's back. He found a clue to the Hidden Immunity Idol on Day 4, but misinterpreted the clue. Cole Medders then helped him find the idol, though Joe was concerned about Cole knowing that he had the idol.

He, along with Desi Williams, was switched to the Levu tribe after the Tribe Switch occurred Day 9. Joe attempted to get Devon Pinto to side with him and Desi by telling him that Alan Ball and Ashley Nolan were targeting him. However, Devon found out about Joe's lie and sided with Alan and Ashley. When Levu lost immunity on Day 11, Joe openly stated he would vote for Ashley at Tribal Council, and annoyed Alan and Ashley with the goal of them voting for him so he could use his idol. At Tribal Council, he played the idol on himself after reading Ashley's facial expression, negating Alan's and Ashley's votes, and his and Desi's votes blindsided Alan. On Day 15, Joe found a clue to another idol, and found the idol that night.

When the tribes merged into the Solewa tribe on Day 17, Joe regrouped with his original Soko tribemates. At the first post-merge Tribal Council, he joined them in voting for Chrissy Hofbeck. Joe played his idol, but received no votes, and Jessica Johnston was blindsided. During the Reward Challenge on Day 20, Joe drew the odd rock and did not have to compete, automatically earning a spot on the reward. In addition, Joe had the power to choose the order that he and the winning team would eat. He assigned himself to eat last, thereby missing a clue to a Hidden Immunity Idol that Cole, Chrissy, and Ryan Ulrich saw and which Ryan later discarded. Upon returning to camp, Joe noticed Cole and Chrissy digging for an idol which Ryan already found, Joe started digging in the same spot. On Day 21, he talked to Ryan and Devon about blindsiding Ben Driebergen for being the perceived leader of the majority alliance, which Ben overheard. Ben confronted him, to which Joe lied about Ben swearing on the marines to cause chaos. At Tribal Council, Joe voted for Ben, and the vote ended in a 4-4-1-1 tie between Joe and Desi. Desi was voted out by a vote of 7-1 in the revote.

On Day 23, Joe tried to find another idol, but was again unsuccessful. He decided to push people's buttons with the goal of them seeing him as an easy "goat" to take to the end. He executed his plan by irritating Chrissy and Ashley, and by calling Ashley a "goat". At Tribal Council, Joe called out the majority alliance for not playing the game. He and Mike voted for Cole, and Cole was voted out. On Day 27, Joe and Mike were approached by Ashley and Lauren Rimmer in a plan to blindside Chrissy, Ryan, and JP Hilsabeck. At Tribal Council, he received a vote from Chrissy, though both he and Mike joined Ashley, Lauren, and Devon in blindsiding JP. After the next Immunity Challenge, Devon lied to Joe and Mike about getting out Ben, and told them to vote for Ryan in an apparent attempt to split their votes to get Ryan to play his idol, though the alliance was actually targeting Joe as he and Mike were now expendable again since Ben's alliance had the majority. At Tribal Council, though Joe and Mike voted for Ryan, Ryan played his idol, negating their votes. The secret alliance of Ashley, Ben, Devon, and Lauren executed their plan and voted against Joe, resulting in his elimination.

At the Final Tribal Council, he called Ryan a puppet master of using Devon as a figurehead, accused Ben and Chrissy for their weak social games, praised Ryan for finding an idol and managing to hide it from everyone else, praised Chrissy for her challenge performances, gave Ben credit for finding multiple idols, and asked Ben not to give up and to explain why he should win. He voted for Ben who won in a 5-2-1 vote.

Voting History

Joe's Voting History
Episode Joe's
Voted Against
1 Soko Tribe Immune
2 Soko Tribe Immune
3 Soko Tribe Immune
4 Alan Alan, Ashley1
5 Levu Tribe Immune
6 Levu Tribe Immune
7 Chrissy -2
8 Ben;
Ashley, Chrissy,
Cole, Mike;
9 Cole -
10 JP Chrissy
Ryan4 Ashley, Ben,
Devon, Lauren
Voted Out, Day 30
Voted For
Sole Survivor

^1 In "I Don't Like Having Snakes Around", Joe used a Hidden Immunity Idol, negating 2 votes against him.
^2 In "Get to Gettin'", Joe used a Hidden Immunity Idol, but did not negate any votes against him.
^3 In "Playing with the Devil", the vote ended with a 4-4 tie between Joe and Desi, forcing a revote. On the revote, Joe did not receive enough votes to be eliminated.
^4 In "Buy One, Get One Free", Ryan used a Hidden Immunity Idol, negating Joe's vote against him.


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Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers Castaways
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