Gloria Jean Mathis Greenidge claims that Stevie Wonder is the father of her 49-year-old daughter, Stephanie Mathis. If the claim turns out to be true, it would mean that Wonder has 10 children from six different women. The 69-year-old Greenidge lives in Philadelphia and says she is dying of lung cancer.
Here is a look at Greenidge’s claims.
1. Greenidge Says She Met Wonder When He Was 17 & She Was 19
Greenige and Mathis first came forward with their story to the Philadelphia Daily News on October 7. She claimed to have met Wonder in the late 1960s, when she was working as a backup dancer. Greenige was 19 at the time and already had three daughters.
She claims that a musical director brought Wonder to her dressing room while he was in Philadelphia to perform at the Uptown Theater.
As she explained to the Daily News:
We fell madly in love with each other… Every time he would come to Philly, he would come get me. … It was just wonderful. I got pregnant, and I let him know. He was very excited about the baby. He was only 17, and I was 19. He was very young, and I was young. And he didn’t want me to have an abortion, and I wouldn’t have done it anyway. So we decided to have our baby.
2. Wonder Mentioned Meeting a Girl at Age 16 When He Went to Philadelphia in 2015
When Wonder was in Philadelphia for a show in August 2015, he reportedly mentioned meeting a girl when he was in the city at age 16, The Daily News reported at the time.
“I’d never been there before, naw . . . It was a Friday going on Saturday. I thought I could see,” Wonder joked before he sang “Hey Love.”
Greenidge’s relatives assumed that Wonder was talking about her when they saw the Daily News report. They told their story to the Daily News, but had no evidence to bakc up their claims until they produced a birth certificate.
The birth certificate lists Steven Judkins as the father of Stephanie Pearline Judkins Mathis. Judkins is the last name Wonder was born with.
3. Greenidge Says She Hasn’t Hard From Wonder Since the 1970s
Greenidge told the Daily News that she has not had contact with Wonder since a phone call in the 1970s. Mathis told Radar Online that she also spoke with Wonder in that phone call. She was 6 years old at the time.
“He said he’d try and visit,” Mathis recalled. He never did. “It was so hard for me. I cried every day and every night,” Mathis told Radar Online.
Mathis and Greenidge are trying to get a hold of Wonder now because Greenidge was diagnosed with lung cancer and is dying. She hopes to be there to introduce her daughter to Wonder in person.
“I just want to spend time with my dad,” Mathis told Radar Online.
Greenidge is now living in senior housing and has a drawing of Wonder posted on her wall. She told the Daily News:
I never gave up hope. I still can’t give up hope. I would like closure. I would like her to meet her father. I would like a DNA [test] because I don’t know how much longer this is going to go on. My cancer has started to spread. … I don’t need to be worrying. I don’t need to be stressed out.
4. Wonder Welcomed His Ninth Child in December 2014
Nia’s mother is Tomeeka Robyn Bracy, who he was once engaged to. The 41-year-old Bracy is also the mother of Wonder’s eighth child.
Wonder has been married twice and his oldest confirmed daughter is Aisha, whose mother is Yolanda Simmons. Aisha was born in February 1975 and can be heard on Wonder’s song “Isn’t She Lovely.” She has since toured with Wonder and contributed to his latest album, 2005’s A Time to Love.
5. Greenidge Has 5 Other Children & Says She Isn’t After Money
Greenidge revealed to the Daily News that she has six children in total, including an adopted daughter. She said that she stopped dancing after Mathis was born and lived on public assistance in a housing project.
Mathis is currently unemployed, but they told the Daily News that they are not interested in money, although they need Wonder in their lives. “He is my ex-man. She needs her father. If it was about the money, I would have got him a long time ago,” Greenidge said. “This is 49 years. This is all about one thing – love.”
Greeidge said that her daughter was named after Wonder. She claims he told her to name the baby Steven if it was a boy and Stephanie if it was a girl.
As for Wonder, his attorney, Laura Wasser, sent a statement to the Daily News and Radar, assuring them that Wonder “will investigate the situation further and make the right decision based on what I learn.”
“As a man who is committed to family, my intention is to do the honorable thing, and I will determine what my actions will be once the whole picture is clearer,” Wonder said. “In that this is a very personal and sensitive time for both families, I would ask that you of the press respect the privacy of all involved and allow this matter to be resolved with dignity for everyone.”