Caddo native to appear on NBC competition show - - No One Gets You Closer

Caddo native to appear on NBC competition show


CADDO - A Texoma native will soon appear on the NBC show, American Ninja Warrior.

The show is a competition series that features physically-fit contestants who try to make it through an intense obstacle course.


After submitting a video to show producers, Jonathan Duncan says he felt he had a good shot at making it on the show.

"They love the fireman aspect of it. They love the family aspect of it," Duncan said.

A father, husband and McKinney firefighter, Duncan grew up in Caddo, Oklahoma.

At age 17, Duncan says he weighed 260 pounds and joined the Army to lose weight.

The superintendent of Caddo Public Schools, Richard Thomas, says he still remembers Duncan from when he was a student.

"I remember Jonathan being in school, very studios, good kid," Thomas said. "I wouldn't characterize him as being an outstanding athlete at that time."

Fast forward 12 years, Duncan has dropped 80 pounds.

He's now a trainer at a CrossFit gym in Plano where he can be seen doing pull-ups on the regular and scaling the backside of stairs, skills that helped him compete in American Ninja Warrior.

Duncan filmed his episode for the show Tuesday in the Metroplex with his family and friends there to cheer him on.

"Not only is it challenging physically but also mentally and [he's] never done anything like that before so it was good to see him before. It was good to see him in that position," Rod Rodriguez said.

"All the cameras. All the lights. The entire crowd screaming at me and yelling at me to do good," Duncan said. "Once the buzzer when off, 3-2-1 go, I just went for it."

While he can't say how he did on the course, ambition and a decision to change more than a decade ago helped him get there.

"I come from a small town in Oklahoma and if I can do it anybody can do it," Duncan said.

Contestants who pass the regional phase of competition advance to national finals in Las Vegas.

Duncan says his episode will air sometime this summer on NBC.