LisaRaye McCoy is an enduring icon in black Hollywood. So much so that a-list actress and screenwriter Issa Rae revealed in her book that she modeled her name after the Player’s Club actress because she enjoyed how much it rolled off the tongue. It is true, LisaRaye has one of those names that are easy to remember and say. However, some do make the mistake of trying to abbreviate it to just Lisa, something she says is a no-no. So what is the origin of her name in the first place?
While catching up with friend Sherri Shepherd who is still co-hosting The Wendy Williams Show, LisaRaye opened up about her name and why it is important to her that people never separate it. LisaRaye and Da Brat share the same father, David Ray McCoy. Their father is no longer with us, so for LisaRaye, it’s important to keep the “Ray” intact because it means a lot to her to carry on their father’s legacy. She says it’s a piece of him she gets to keep with her.
LisaRaye and Da Brat’s father was a well-respected businessman and investor in Chicago, IL. David Ray McCoy was a paraplegic who established himself on the south side through several hotels, nightclubs, and more. LisaRaye’s father was also well known for lending people money to start their own businesses.
McCoy would pass in 1988, after an incident involving his girlfriend Shelia and her brother Tyrone. There were multiple rumors regarding the incident. Shelia and McCoy’s father lived together and some people believe the incident occurred over a simple electric bill. Despite that rumor, McCoy’s family believes Shelia became irratic after learning she would be removed from his will for unknown reasons. After learning this information, Shelia and Tyrone took his life. Shelia was later convicted twice, eventually sentenced to 80 years in prison.
LisaRaye revealed recently that her father’s passing has a lot to do with her wearing white all the time. It’s a known tradition for people to wear black to a funeral to show respect to the deceased. In some cases, people believe wearing any other color is slap in the face. However, LisaRaye was not super fond of this tradition and hated the idea despite her mother deciding to stick to tradition. Years after the funeral, LisaRaye realized she mostly wore white and felt it must have had something to do with that moment with her mother.
Outside of this, LisaRaye and Da Brat do not speak much about their father. The sisters are extremely close and recently were photographed together at Da Brat’s wedding, where LisaRaye actually wore a color other than white as not to clash with her sister’s wedding gown. The pair reportedly have three other sisters; Jehlan, Morgan, and Cynthia.
Actor Colombus Short was recently on an episode of Cocktails With Queens, where he revealed he made the mistake several times of calling LisaRaye “Lisa.” He said he had reached out to McCoy to see if she wanted to be a part of the True To The Game franchise. When he called, he asked to speak with Lisa. LisaRaye immediately hung up. Short says he was so sorry and called back twice before he got it right. Her co-hosts laughed and joked about how much she does not play with her name.