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Remembering Lynn Yamada Davis – The Heart and Soul Behind “Cooking With Lynja”

Are you familiar with Lynn Yamada Davis—if not, then you may have seen a clip of the viral hit “Cooking With Lynja.”

Lynn was born in the heart of New York City on July 31, 1956. She brought joy and laughter to millions of people through her delicious meals and beaming smiles. Tragically, Lynn, 67, died on January 1, 2024, as a result of esophageal cancer. 

Lynn and her youngest child, Tim Davis, tried something different to kickstart their TikTok career, They began the “Cooking With Lynja” videos in 2020, during the peak pandemic year. What began as a way for Lynn to assist Tim in improving his cinematography skills quickly grew into a worldwide TikTok phenomenon.

Lynn went viral on TikTok thanks to her vibrant personality and unique dance moves, garnering millions of views. Her must-watch? the well-known video of her cheese, bacon, and egg sandwich.

Lynn Yamada Davis
Lynn Yamada Davis

With nearly 2 million Instagram followers and nearly 10 million YouTube subscribers, “Cooking With Lynja” has surpassed TikTok as a social media phenomenon.

Lynn’s unique approach to cooking and her engaging style of presentation struck a chord with viewers all over the world.

Forbes acknowledged Lynn’s influence in 2022 by listing her in their esteemed “50 over 50” list. She also received Streamy Awards for editing and food.

Beyond the virtual world of social media, Lynn’s fame spread, she even gained recognition globally such as in Italy and Japan.

Tim, her youngest son, joined her on trips and demonstrated how popular “Cooking With Lynja” was around the world.

Sean Davis, her other son, who is a soccer player often told stories about strangers recognizing his mother while walking down the street.

Lynn was working for Bell Labs (now AT&T Labs) before she gained recognition through TikTok.

She has a civil engineering degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a master’s degree in business administration and public health from Columbia University’s Business School. Lynn’s life is truly an example of diverse career choices and the role of fate.

Lynn faced health issues that caused her voice to change after being diagnosed with throat cancer in 2019, but she persisted and continued to share her zest for life through her cooking videos.

In 2021, she faced esophageal cancer and shared her experience on TikTok. Though she was baking a ton of cookies for the medical staff who were taking care of her, Lynn’s strength and optimism were evident.

Lynn lived a life full of adventures and culinary discoveries. She has made us smile quite often and all her final years were filled with extensive travels.

After some thought, Sean Davis concluded that his mother would have wanted her final years to be as happy, exploratory, and relational as possible.

The world will never forget Lynn Yamada Davis for her happiness, laughter, and enduring legacy because of her unique culinary and comedic style.

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