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Yam Yam Becomes First Out Gay 'Survivor' Winner Of Color In History

Yam Yam Becomes First Out Gay 'Survivor' Winner Of Color In History

Survivor 44

Yam Yam beat his competition by a 7-1-0 jury vote on Survivor 44.


Survivor 44 has just crowned the show’s first-ever gay winner of color.

Yamil Arocho, best known by the nickname “Yam Yam,” had an incredible social game throughout season 44 of Survivor that took him to the very end of the competition. He also won the legendary “Last Gasp” challenge of the show, which surprised even himself.

At 36 years old, Yam Yam was introduced to Survivor fans as a salon owner from San Juan, Puerto Rico. He was open about being gay and not necessarily being the biggest physical threat. Nonetheless, he quickly captivated those around him in the Tika tribe, and continued to build upon his social game post-merger.

Yam Yam made it to the grand finale alongside fellow Tika tribe member Carolyn Wiger and fellow Puerto Rican costar Heidi Lagares-Greenblatt. In the end, he beat both of them by a 7-1-0 jury vote – taking home the grand prize of $1 million.

Yam Yam’s crowning on Survivor 44 turns him into the first-ever gay man of color to win the show. He is also the first gay man to win Survivor since Todd Herzog, who won Survivor: China (season 15).

In his pre-Survivor interviews, Yam Yam talked about his husband and how he loves doing drag for Halloween. He was also incredibly supportive of other LGBTQ+ contestants in the season, having important conversations with them that went beyond any gameplay.

We loved watching Yam Yam on Survivor and couldn’t be happier about him winning season 44!

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