Dan Kay
S17 Dan Kay
Contestant Profile
Born: June 30, 1976
Died: December 31, 2016 (age 40)
Hometown: Boston, Massachusetts
Occupation: Lawyer
Survivor Career
Version: United States
Tribe(s): Fang
► Kota
Finish: 11/18
Challenge Wins: 8
Votes Against: 4
Days Lasted: 21
Daniel "Dan" Kay, Jr. was a contestant from Survivor: Gabon.


Retrieved from

Dan Kay (32)
Hometown: Boston, Massachusetts
Occupation: Lawyer

Dan Kay has come a long way from his blue-collar roots in Boston. Born and raised in Walpole, Massachusetts, he was very involved in athletics, especially football, skiing and track. While in high school, Dan played on a varsity football team, which had a long tradition of winning, a tradition that has helped shape his strong work-ethic. He graduated from The University of Massachusetts, Amherst with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science & English and later would earn his law degree from Syracuse University College of Law where he was also a member of the Moot Court Honor Society.

Charismatic, hard working and goal oriented, most of Dan's traits were formed from the influence provided by his parents and a select few coaches and teachers. As a young boy, his father became disabled, leaving his mother to care for his family and, eventually, his ill grandmother, all while working as a full-time nurse. In addition, Dan credits his mother's work ethic and unselfish attitude for his strong desire to overcome any obstacles in his career and personal life.

Dan has practiced law in Boston for five years, which helped him to purchase several investment properties. However, dedicating so much of his time to his practice left him depressed and feeling less than fulfilled with his life. Prior to leaving for SURVIVOR, he sold off a number of investments and spent time away from his job, in an effort to focus more on himself and his friends and family. He believes this recent awareness, along with having an increased appreciation for the people in his life rather than material possessions, will help him succeed not only in his personal life, but on SURVIVOR.

Attractive, athletic, single and a lawyer, Dan is set to make a big impression on his competitors. Dan's hobbies include skiing, running, biking, weight training and cooking. Currently, he is training to compete in his first triathlon.

He is single and lives in Boston. His birthdate is June 30, 1976.[1]


Dan started out on the Fang tribe after being picked by Randy Bailey, who stated "we've gotta have a tie on our team!" (in reference to Dan's wardrobe at the time, which included a tie). After Fang lost the first Immunity Challenge, Dan remained in good spirits and challenged Jeff Probst when he called their challenge performance a "disaster". That night, he joined the rest of the tribe in voting out Michelle Chase for her general negativity.

After Michelle's elimination, Dan continued to be safe in the game, until Kota sent him to Exile Island after they won a combined Reward/Immunity Challenge, sending Fang to their second Tribal Council. On Exile Island, Dan was confronted with the choice of comfort or clue, and he "picked the clue right away". Despite an exhausting search that lasted for hours, Dan could not find the idol, and felt like an idiot for not being able to do so.  When Dan arrived back at camp, he told the tribe that he had not found the Hidden Immunity Idol. Despite this, many tribemates, including Crystal Cox and Matty Whitmore, were suspicious that he had the idol in his possession, and his name was suggested for elimination over the weaker Gillian Larson. At Tribal Council, in a desperate attempt to prove that he did not have the idol, he tipped out all of his possessions from his bag to show that he had no idol. He voted for Gillian that night, as he thought it was the way the majority was going. Dan was worried for his life in the game, but ultimately he was spared, and Gillian was unanimously voted out. 

The next day, Randy Bailey suggested Fang cut back from three meals a day to two, in order to conserve their dwindling rice supply. When G.C. Brown challenged Randy on this and an argument ensued, Dan was worried, as he felt the tribe needed to be as unified as possible. Dan seemed to struggle at the following Reward Challenge, as both rounds saw him perform badly. He lost a point in his first attempt and quickly ran out of energy in his second. Nonetheless, Fang won the Reward- and their first Challenge- two points to one. After the challenge, the entire Fang tribe was in high spirits. In the next Immunity Challenge, Fang got out to a quick lead but soon fell behind by a considerable margin. Although Dan tried his best to make up as much time as possible, Fang were still behind when Ken Hoang began the puzzle. Fortunately for Fang, Ken made up a lot of time and solved the puzzle first, giving Fang their first immunity win and keeping Dan safe. 

On Day 10, Dan solidified a four-person pact with Susie Smith, Matty, and Randy to get rid of the three outsiders: Crystal, Ken. and G.C. However, before the Reward Challenge got underway, Jeff asked the tribes to rank their members from highest to lowest. Dan was ranked second, behind only Matty. The castaways were then shocked to learn there would be a Tribe Switch. Dan ended up on Kota as the first person picked by Marcus Lehman and was joined by Randy and Susie. Dan enjoyed the new Kota tribe, but it seemed clear that the four original Kota- Marcus, Charlie, Corinne, and Bob would stick together, which put Dan in danger of going home if Kota lost immunity. Fortunately for Dan, immunity was a blow-out, and he was kept safe. 

On Day 13, Dan eagerly proposed a seven-person alliance with the seven post-swap Kota members. This put him in danger, however, as it caught the attention of Marcus, who claimed that "nobody buys it." In the Reward Challenge, Dan was a fruit thrower and manged to get a lot of fruit through after Kota came up with the strategy of throwing two pieces of fruit at once. Kota then went on to win the Reward Challenge. At the Immunity Challenge, Dan was the guard for Kota, and despite Kota falling behind early, the poor calling of Sugar Kiper for Fang resulted in Kota winning immunity again, keeping Dan safe for a few more days. 

On Day 16, Dan annoyed his tribemates by eating an excessive amount of rice. Bob commented, "He had the same amount of scoops on his plate that I put on my plate for me and Susie to share."  At the next Reward Challenge, Dan won once again after Fang's members struggled to uphold the snake. Back at camp, Dan further annoyed his tribemates by trying to impose rations for their reward on the whole tribe. Dan looked to be in danger should Kota go to Tribal Council, but thankfully for him, Kota won immunity after performing well on the puzzle section. 

On Day 19, worried for his place in the game, Dan recognized that three original Kota members- Corinne, Charlie, and Marcus- were tight and tried to make a tight group with them. Unfortunately, this led to Corinne viewing him as paranoid and socially inept. On Day 20, when it was revealed that both tribes would be going to Tribal Council and would be competing for Individual Immunity, Dan felt he needed to win the necklace. Unfortunately for him, he lost to Fang's Ace Gordon in the first round of the challenge. Immunity was won by Marcus. After the Immunity Challenge, it seemed most likely it would either be Dan or Susie, but the original Kota knew there were pros and cons to keeping both,. Dan was given a glimmer of hope when Susie told Corinne that she had planned on voting Corinne, which visibly angered Corinne and caused her to go back to her alliance and propose they vote out Susie, which Randy agreed to. However, they were worried Dan possessed the Immunity Idol, due to his stay on Exile Island, and worried that Dan would go to Susie and use the Idol to blindside Corinne. Therefore, at Tribal Council, the Onion Alliance split their votes between Dan and Susie. Unfortunately for Dan, he was their primary target, and he was voted out 4-3. 

Voting History

Dan's Voting History
Episode Dan's
Voted Against
1 Michelle -
Gillian -
2 Fang Tribe Immune
3 Kota Tribe Immune
4 Kota Tribe Immune
5 Kota Tribe Immune
6 Susie Bob, Charlie,
Corinne, Susie
Voted Off, Day 21


  • On January 9, 2010, Dan attended Survivor's 10-year anniversary party along with all of his Gabon cast mates.


  • Dan passed away under unknown circumstances on December 31, 2016.[2] He is survived by his two children: Reese Elizabeth and Jackson. Dan is the fourth of four deceased former Survivor contestants, the others being Jenn Lyon (2010), B.B. Andersen (2013), and Caleb Bankston (2014).