Murrysville's Iocco savored her 'Big' summer on reality TV
It was a summer to remember for Murrysville native Ashley Iocco.
The Franklin Regional graduate dressed as a taco, walked the plank and found a bit of romance as a contestant on CBS's reality competition “Big Brother 14.”
A mobile spray tanner who lives in California, Iocco counts the experience among the best of her life.
“It was an amazing experience,” said Iocco, 26. “It was so much fun and I would totally do it again. I don't have any regrets.”
Iocco was one of 16 contestants on the show, which secludes houseguests in a fake house for much of the summer.
Houseguests compete for power over the house each week by competing in a “Head of Household” competition.
The winner nominates two houseguests for eviction, which is voted on by the other members of the house.
But nominated houseguests have a chance for redemption – winning the “Power of Veto” competition, which enables them to nullify one of the nominations. Iocco did not win any of the competitions.
She was, however, nominated for eviction twice – once by houseguest Shane Meaney and once by fellow Pittsburgher and eventual “Big Brother 14” winner Ian Terry. She was evicted from the house on Aug. 23 by a vote of 5-1.
She then became the first member of the jury house, where the final seven houseguests to be evicted live in sequestration until they cast a vote for the winner of the show.
The day Iocco was evicted was the first day she began to feel like herself again. Iocco spent several weeks in a haze of pain, she said, after back spasms left her in agony.
“I felt like I couldn't play the game I wanted to play,” she said.
“I don't think people realized how much pain I was in. With the medication I was taking, sometimes I felt like I wasn't myself. I just wanted to push through that and have a good time.”
Though she dealt with a lot of pain in the house, she also had a lot of fun. Among her favorite experiences were the “wacky” competitions she took part in, an “ice-cream date” with fellow houseguest Frank Eudy and her first “slop” date with Terry.
She enjoyed having someone else from the Pittsburgh area – Terry is an engineering student at Tulane University in New Orleans, who grew up in Shaler – to talk with.
“It was really comforting having someone else from Pittsburgh and being able to talk about things we have in common from home, like Kennywood and different restaurants,” Iocco said. “It was nice to have an immediate connection with somebody.”
Terry said he firmly believes the pair will stay friends now that the game is over.
“Having another Pittsburgher in the house was really cool,” Terry said of Iocco. “She was a nice girl. We won't date outside of here, I don't think, but we will stay friends definitely.”
Terry left enough of an impression on Iocco that she cast a vote for him to win the game and its $500,000 prize.
Terry wasn't the only super fan on the show. Iocco said she has watched “Big Brother” since its premier season in 2000 with her mom.
While she wasn't allowed contact with family or friends during her time in the Big Brother house, she knew that her parents and brother were her “number one fans” back home in Murrysville.
Iocco said that during the 48 days she spent in the Big Brother house, Iocco learned a lot.
“I learned so much about myself,” Iocco said. “I really learned to never give up and to believe in yourself. I learned how to be a fighter through a really hard situation. I'll never forget this.”
Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627, or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Starkey: Steelers still knockin’ on Canton’s door
- Review: Pittsburgh son Billy Porter shines bright in ‘Kinky Boots’
- McKeesport charter sees no problems for opening
- Pitcher Arrieta, Cubs shut down Pirates in victory at PNC Park
- Mon Valley takes time out for night out to build community
- Rostraver native revisits roots on cross-country bike journey
- Heyward-Bey looks to make impact on special teams with Steelers
- Philanthropist and one-time GOP powerhouse Elsie Hillman dies at 89
- Fire displaces Kittanning family of 6
- Steelers notebook: Spaeth on baby watch
- Catching on: Jeannette grad Pryor making progress with transition to receiver