Former NBA baller Dwyane Wade is always stepping behind his 15-year-old daughter Zaya and continues to be an ally and one of her biggest supporters regarding her identity. The father of four filed court papers Thursday morning, petitioning for his transgender daughter to change her name officially. According to Spectrum News, Dwyane is petitioning for his daughter to be allowed to permanently change her name from Zion Malachi Airamis Wade to Zaya Malachi Airamis Wade.
In addition, The Blast reports in the filing, Dwyane also asked that the court legally issues a decree recognizing that the minors’ gender is changed to “female.” It specifically cites the reason for the change as “to conform with gender identity.”The petition filed in Los Angeles Superior Court states that he has full authority to enact decisions on his daughter’s behalf. In addition, he has notified his former wife and daughter’s mother, Siohvaughn Funches, of the legal action. Zaya has been very vocal about how she identifies. Yahoo! News reports that during a previous appearance on ‘The Ellen Show’ in 2020, Dwyane shared that Zaya had begun using she/her pronouns.
He recounted that Zaya was 12 years old; she had come home and told her family that she wanted to have a conversation. She then asked to be called Zaya instead of Zion. “We’re just trying to figure out as much information as we can to make sure that we give our child the best opportunity to be her best self,” Dwyane told Ellen.
With the world watching Zaya grow and continue to come into her own, Dwyane supports his child, although he fears for her safety living. In June, he attended the TIME100 Summit and told CNN, “As blessed as it is for my daughter to have parents who can support her, I’m still afraid every moment she leaves the house.” He added, “And not just because of gun violence, but because of the way people perceive her in this world.”