MUSCATINE — Lorrie Lacina was surprised her neighbors didn't call in a noise complaint Wednesday night, as she watched her daughter win $1 million on national television.
Muscatine native and Muscatine High School graduate Sarah Lacina, a police officer in Cedar Rapids, took home the top prize on the reality TV show "Survivor: Game Changers."
"If I would have had fireworks, I would have set them off," Lorrie Lacina said.
She has been watching "Survivor" every week this season, gathering around her television set with her best friends. Wednesday night was no different.
"We were just elated when they announced who won," she said. "I had my close friends with me and we all held hands waiting. It was just white-knuckle time, seeing did she win or didn't she."
Sarah was named the winner after 39 days of competition and a final tribal council during the season finale. She gained the jury's favor, beating runner-up Brad Culpepper and third-place finisher Troyzan Robertson.
Sarah first competed on Season 28 of "Survivor," and Lorrie said she has made several lifelong friends throughout both seasons.
While her daughter finished filming almost a year ago, Lorrie discovered the results Wednesday night with the rest of the world. But she would text Sarah during each episode and offer theories about who might win.
"I see her this weekend when she flies home, so I'll get to talk to her then and ask about the experience and how she felt," Lorrie said.
During the season finale, Sarah told the jury her support system at home helped her have the commitment to win.
Lorrie said when her daughter was deciding whether to return for the 34th season of the show, she offered encouragement.
"I told her if you're going to do it, you're going to have to commit to winning it," Lorrie said. "You have to play to win it."
Lorrie said the timing of the show worked out well because Sarah's son, Knox, was still less than two years old.
"I told her you're playing for your family now," Lorrie said. "You're not playing for you. You're playing for Knox."
She said Sarah had a village back home, of friends and family, supporting her along the way.
Now that she's claimed the $1 million prize, Lorrie said her daughter will likely invest for Knox's college tuition and buy a new house for her family.