debbie

Gwaltney said she’s been a fan of game shows and sports her entire life. (Courtesy photo/Debbie Gwaltney)

Debbie Gwaltney was on ‘Let’s Make a Deal’ before too

FERNDALE — Game shows and sports. 

Anyone who knows anything about Ferndale resident Debbie Gwaltney knows those are two of her favorite things. 

She made a virtual appearance on the game show “Let’s Make a Deal” last spring, and when the opportunity came to possibly reappear on the show she jumped at the chance. 

Gwaltney said she was leaving an appointment at lunch when a phone call from a number she didn’t recognize came in. She thought it was a California number and picked it up.

“At first I thought it was a joke,” Gwaltney said. “When he said he was a producer from Let’s Make a Deal, I was like, ‘Is this for real?’”

She told him she’d love to be on the show and not even 30 minutes later she was on the phone with another producer, Gwaltney said. 

Filming in studio for the show started back up last fall and a producer reached out to Gwaltney to see if she wanted to be on the show again. There were 12 contestants in the studio and 18 on the wall on Zoom. 

“Since I live up in Washington, I did the Zoom meeting on their wall,” Gwaltney said. “It was fun being able to talk to everyone on the Zoom meeting, but it was different not having the people right there with you. It was safe, most importantly. It was a thrill filming from home.”

Gwaltney filmed the second time in December and the episode aired Tuesday morning, Feb. 16. 

This isn’t the first time Gwaltney has appeared on the show, however. A few years back, she took her son on a vacation to Los Angeles and was selected in studio to be on the show. 

“That time, I did the safe thing and took cash instead of going for the prizes,” she said. “I took the $1,500 and of course they opened up the box and it was a trip for two to the Dominican Republic. So this time, I just told myself I’m going to go for it and whatever happens, happens. I didn’t want to be safe. I just wanted to have fun and go for it.”

That approach paid off as Gwaltney found herself at the end of the show going for the big deal. 

She had initially won an entertainment center, but traded it for a chance at the big deal.

“I stuck with door number one because I had a dream that big prizes were going to be behind door number one,” Gwaltney said. “They showed my door and I won a $25,000 Jeep Renegade. It was very, very exciting. It was incredible.”

Gwaltney said she had been looking forward to the episode airing because during filming it was easy to get caught up in the moment and not remember everything that happened.

“Just watching it over again — I’m exhausted,” she said. “There were more pieces of it that I didn’t remember.”

Gwaltney will still have to pay taxes on the new vehicle she won and also just bought a new car last year, so she said she’ll have to figure out what to do there with two new vehicles, but it’s all worth it in the end.