By Mark Ellis, Senior Correspondent for ASSIST News Service
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (ANS – January 20, 2017) — In a few months, a somewhat reclusive, media-shy billionaire burger heiress will gain full control of the growing In-N-Out Burger empire. After her father’s untimely death from a drug overdose in 1999, and multiple marriage disasters in her own life, she’s emerged with a deepened faith in God’s love.
“My dad was really funny,” Lynsi Snyder recounted in an I Am Second video. “He was a little bit eccentric, and loved to make people laugh.”
In-N-Out has a loyal fan base because of its Double-Double cheeseburgers, fresh ingredients and Bible verses on its cups and food wrappers. Growing up, she had strong Christian influences, but her budding faith was derailed by circumstances and unhealthy choices.
When Lynsi was only five or six-years-old she went to visit her dad in the hospital. “I thought it was just the hospital, but it was rehab. Mom said he was just sick. It wasn’t until later I learned he had a drug addiction,” she said.
“It was really hard for me to see him fail and to be weak because I know how bad he wanted to be a good husband and father.”
Lynsi’s father, Harry, had gained control of In-N-Out after his brother’s death in a plane crash in 1993. But in the next few years, his personal weaknesses left their mark.
“It was a matter of time before the drugs and another woman (caused problems)…that was pretty much it. They got a divorce when I was 12. That’s when I really started longing for that attention and that love because my dad was the greatest source of that,” she noted.
Her father died from an accidental overdose of Vicodin after three other overdoses in the same year. He suffered a heart attack three years earlier that was also related to drug use. At the time of his death, he was living in a motor home parked outside his nephew’s home, according to the L.A. Times.
His death left Lynsi reeling. “My world shattered,” she said. “After my dad died there was no way I was gonna be alone. He was gone so I had a greater reason to fill the void.”
A few months after her high school graduation, Lynsi married her boyfriend, Jeremiah Seawell, even though she felt a check in her spirit from the Lord. “It wasn’t right. That still small voice told me not to do this. But I did it and I paid the price with a divorce,” she said.
Photo captions: 1) Lynsi Snyder. 2) In-N-Out Burger sign. 3) Mark Ellis with Dan Wooding, when they together co-hosted the “Windows on the World” TV show.
About the writer: Mark Ellis is Senior Correspondent for the ASSIST News Service (www.assistnews.net), and is also the the founder of www.GodReports.com, a website that shares testimonies and videos from the church around the world to build interest and involvement in world missions. Previously, Mark co-hosted a TV show called “Windows on the World” with ANS Founder, Dan Wooding, aired on the Holy Spirit Broadcasting Network (http://hsbn.tv/), which is now co-hosted by Dr. Garry Ansdell, Senior Pastor of Hosanna Christian Fellowship in Bellflower, California.
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