Stephen M. Silverman
November 14, 2003 12:27 PM

At 24 days into “Survivor: Pearl Islands,” Ryan Opray, an electrician from Los Gatos, Calif., got the boot on the CBS reality show in the episode that aired Thursday night.

Yet even though he’s out of the competition for the $1 million prize, Ryan, 31, isn’t gone yet: He has become the first member of the jury, with the duty to return every three nights to observe the tribal council as it prepares to decide the sole survivor.

After the vote that decided his fate, Ryan said, “I thought I’d be in this ’til the end. I knew I wasn’t a quitter, but I think I had no idea how tough I was.”

Earlier in the episode Thursday, the first individual reward challenge required slingshots to fire marbles at targets that set off flames, explained host Jeff Probst.

The winner hitting the most targets would get a lavish breakfast, he added.

Ryan won the first heat, but Rupert Boneham, 39, a teen mentor from Indianapolis, hit three targets in a row to advance to the final heat and win the breakfast. Acting charitable, he took along Lillian Morris, 51, a scout troop leader from Cincinnati, who had also come close to winning the target practice.

As for the Balboa tribe’s individual immunity challenge, questions had to do with trivia based on local pirate lore. Ryan was quickly eliminated, which eventually left Christa and Rupert — with the latter securing his immunity for that night’s tribal council.

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