The American singer-songwriter Sheila Raye Charles was the daughter of famous Blues, and Gospel singer, songwriter, musician, and composer, Ray Charles AKA “The Genius”. Sadly, she’s no more with us. But her music and her father’s contribution to the American Music still resides in the heart of many.
And today, in the loving memory of Ray Charles and his daughter, this biography will reveal the life story of Sheila Raye Charles. From a downward spiral of addiction to having faith in Jesus, we’ve covered it all. Stick till the end to find about her cause of death, net worth, childhood, siblings, and age.
The American singer Sheila Raye Charles was born in September 1963, Los Angeles, California, United States. She was the daughter of her mother Sandra Jean Betts and one of the iconic musicians of the 20th century, Ray Charles, who played, sang and composed music, blindly. But the blind man had something extra-ordinary about his talent, his music was pure and by heart.
Her mother wasn’t the one that Ray married, but Sandra and Ray’s romance became the gossip of the town after Sheila’s birth.
“It was very confusing times,” Sheila said. “My father came to see my mother and didn’t see me. It was very hard. Every little girl wants their father. The moments I had with him I treasured.”
“It was very hard” as Sheila recalls her early life memory. She and her mom, Sandra moved places before finally settling in Minnesota.
In the musical testimony of her life, ‘Behind The Shades’ (autobiography), Sheila Raye noted how she finally found a ray of light at the end of her tunnel.
During her early childhood, Sheila was allegedly abused by her own family member.
At the age of 16 years old, Ray Charles’ daughter survived a near-fatal car wreck.
She also did three stints in federal prison while heavily drugged with crack & cocaine.
She is alive in her autobiography where she mentions, at that time she was at the lowest point in her life. It was during her last confinement that her life dramatically changed.
On a conversation with BYU radio about her writing of the book, Sheila Raye Charles admitted that the Lord woke her up.
“In the middle of the night, the Lord asked to take her life story and put it to music,” while she thought of “Ooh that’s gonna be a long song”, Sheila mocked during a live studio performance.
Well, when you’ve been through a lot and you realize that GOD brought you through it, you’ve got to tell the world. So, after surviving sexual abuse, car wreck, imprisonment and addiction, Sheila went on to share her testimony throughout the whole world.
“God always has a way of doing things perfectly” – Sheila Raye Charles
Along with her story, the book also surfaces her mothers’ story of meeting her father.
The American singer Ray Charles only married twice in his life. Firstly, he married Eileen Williams in the year 1951 but their romance didn’t last because of Rays’ hectic schedule. So the separated after a year of their nuptials. Ray didn’t share any child with his ex-wife, Eileen.
After four years of getting a divorce with his first wife, Ray Charles walked down the aisle with his second wife Della Beatrice Howard Robinson in the year 1955. Two decades later, they separated in 1977.
But the exciting thing about his life story is all the children’s’ that Ray had.
Sheila Raye Charles had altogether 11 siblings (all of them are half-brothers’ and sisters from Ray’s married life and extra affairs. Yes, Sheila was born after Rays’ romantic fleet with her mom Sandra.
Here’s the list of all Ray Charles Children (Sheila’s Siblings)
Vincent Kotchounian – from Ray Charles’ relationship with Arlette Kotchounian
Charles Wayne Hendricks – from Ray Charles’ relationship with Margie Hendrix
Ryan Corey Robinson (youngest of all) – from Ray’s affair with Mary Anne den Bok
Robyn Moffett – from Ray’s extra-marital affair with Gloria Moffett.
Ray Charles Robinson, Jr. (film-producer) – from Ray’s relationship with Della Beatrice Howard Robinson
Raenee Robinson – daughter from Mae Mosely Lyles
Reatha Butler – half-sister whose mothers’ name is still under the radar
Robert Robinson – from Ray’s marital relationship with Della Beatrice Howard Robinson
Evelyn Robinson – Della Robinson’s Daughter
David Robinson – (Della’s son)
Alexandra Bertrand – son from Mary-Chantal Bertrand
Following her fathers’ footsteps, Sheila Raye chose the music career as an adult. Ray Charles’ daughters’ debut album, Introducing Sheila Raye Charles, was released in the year 2005. This R&B singles collection includes traditional standards and a touching tribute to her late father, “My Daddy.”
Even though Sheila’s life began as the daughter of an American musical icon, it almost ended in a 20-year crack-cocaine addiction.
But after she found her joy on God, Sheila traveled across the United States and abroad spreading her message of love and redemption, keeping her legendary father’s memory alive through song, and worships.
‘It’s only by the grace of God that I’ve left the chair where I used to sit.’ – Sheila admitted before her death.
The accurate figure of her net worth is still below the radar. However, it is estimated that Sheila Raye Charles’ net worth was $1 Million – $10 Million at the time of her death.
Be that as it may, her father Ray Charles had an estimated net worth of $100 million.
Sheila Raye Charles married Michael Steptoe. Information about her nuptials and kids are still under review. However, we’ve learned that she’d recently relocated to Sarasota, Florida just before her passing.
She was survived by her husband, children, siblings, grandchildren and a host of nieces and nephews at the time of her death.
The daughter of Ray Charles, Sheila Raye Charles died on June 15, 2017. It was later revealed that the cause of her death was breast cancer. Sheila was 53 years old at the time of her death.
This post was last modified on January 10, 2020 3:38 am
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