Where did the baby name Tyechia come from in 1982?

Gussie Alexis holding toddler Tyechia
Gussie and Tyechia

In mid-1982, a little girl named Tyechia Reid was making headlines.

Tyechia was two-and-a-half years old and her foster mother, 63-year-old New York widow Gussie Alexis, was fighting to adopt her.

Gussie, who had raised Tyechia since infancy and had weaned her from a heroin addiction, was ordered in June to surrender Tyechia. The adoption agency told her she was too old to adopt.

Gussie refused. Instead, she fought the adoption agency all summer. Finally, in September, she won custody of the little girl.

Thanks to this ongoing (and heart-warming) news story, the baby name Tyechia became the top debut name of 1982 with 71 baby girls:

  • 1984: 10 baby girls named Tyechia
  • 1983: 53 baby girls named Tyechia (and 6 more named Tyecha)
  • 1982: 71 baby girls named Tyechia [debut]
  • 1981: unlisted
  • 1980: unlisted

It stayed in the U.S. baby name data until the late 1980s, but hasn’t been back since. (Spelling variant Tyecha was a one-hit wonder.)

What are your thoughts on the name Tyechia?


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