‘I got married at 17, had 21 children from 12 ‘baby mamas’
Raymond Hogans, who celebrated his 64th birthday in St. Louis, Missouri America recently, narrates his life journey with our reporter, Taiwo A
HE is a man of few words. His infectious smile could melt an ice bag. He is cool and gentle and humility personified. He walks in the manner of a king and dresses as if it is for a dressing competition; always in his cap and trade mark bling-bling.
Raymond Hogans’ dress sense is unique. He was a ladies’ man in his youth. He is always spotted in the crowd not because of his light skin but for his dress sense. In fact, you would hardly know he is going to work.
At 64, the soft-spoken gentleman and grandfather has many attributes that make him earn respect from his colleagues and co-workers. Welcome to the life of Ray Hogans; a man who has seen it all.
Asked to introduce himself, he parted his lips with a smile. “My name is Raymond Hogans. I came from a poor family in Mississippi. My grandmother had 13 kids, but they are all dead. She decided to leave Mississippi and came down to St. Louis here to settle down.
“I graduated from Central High School, St. Louis, Missouri.”
The ladies’ man did not deny his virility as a young man.
He said: ”I got married at the age of 17. I went into the military from 1978 to 1984. I have 14 girls, seven boys, 89 grandchildren and 12 baby mamas.”
In America where child support (welfare of the children) is compulsory and could land the father in jail if he defaults, the man, who loves his children, said he paid child support for 40 years.
In his own words: ”I paid child support for 40 years and I am free now. I stopped paying it three years ago. I worked all my life paying child support.
What would have happened if he didn’t pay? the reporter asked. To this, he said he could end up in jail, according to the Law of the United States of America. ”I didn’t want to be jailed, so I had to work for 40 hours every week for 40 years.”
Explaining what led him into having many baby mamas, he said his first marriage was bad.
He said: “I was young then and was there messing around with a lot of girls, and it happened!” Asked why he took another wife, he responded: ”The same thing. I failed being a youth. It was bad.”
Pressed further on how he got the fourth, the fifth and the rest, he also attributed it to ”my bad marriage”.
First baby mama
Asked about his first baby mama, Hogans said: ”My first Baby Mama was my first wife. We grew up together as kids in high school, but she died later.”
Hogans said he had both white and black baby mamas who had children for him.
He said: “I had a white Baby Mama who had 11 kids for me while the rest black baby mamas had one, two or three kids, and altogether, they are 21 kids.”
Asked whether he regretted having a lot of children and baby mamas, he nodded his head in the negative. ”No, no, I love my children. That is my hobby,” he said. He however said he does not need any more kids or baby mamas as he has put a full stop to it.
Hogans could not keep his baby mamas for long. Asked about all his baby mamas now, he said in low tone: “Four are dead and eight are still living, as they went their ways to remarry.”
Asked what he would say if he were to counsel the youths of today, he said with a smile: “Stay in school. Have education. Don’t make all these babies, because you will never have money!”
Could he have followed in his father’s footsteps? The 64-year-old man dropped his head and threw a bombshell: “I don’t know my dad. He died when I was barely six years old. So I didn’t know him. My mother trained me. “
Hogans said her mother had six children with him as the eldest.
“My mother had six of us: three boys and three girls, and I am the oldest,” he said. He however added that his children do not give him money because he too works to sustain himself.
“No, they don’t give me money for I can take care of myself,” he told the reporter.
Asked whether his children do ask him why he had many women and large number of children and grandchildren, he responded: ”Yes, they do. But then I was young. I messed around with a lot of women. I see all my children and grandkids when I want to.”
Hogans, however, said he does not want babies again. ”No, no, I don’t want babies again,” he said, raising his hands up in total surrender.
Asked about his dressing, the 64year-old looked at himself and smiled. He fiddled with his grey beard and said: ”I always dress good. I don’t know why. I have about 200 caps, a lot of designer sneakers and shoes. I have a lot of necklaces and hand chains. I love to wear good clothes , bling bling and shoes. Yes, I love to dress good.”