Nicknames or Calling Cards Adopted as Legal Names

Marvelous Marvin Hagler (middleweight boxes extraordinaire) recently died. Member Loach (2020 Death Pool Champion - can’t leave that out) pointed out that he made the “Marvelous” portion part of his legal name.

What other celebrities/sport stars/monarchs/etc… have done the same thing?

WWF wrestler The Ultimate Warrior, born Jim Hellwig, changed his legal name to Warrior, ostensibly to be able to maintain control of his trademark. When he went to WCW and other promotions, he continued to use the name. When he got married, his wife changed her name to Dana Warrior.

IIRC, Teller is the magician’s legal name.

As an aside, I used to babysit for the kids of one of his cousins in the late 1980s. Back then, he maintained absolute silence in public, and family had been instructed no to tell anyone whether he actually could speak or not.

More, on the OP’s topic, changing you name isn’t that big a deal, if it’s something you are broadly known by, because the public has an interest in you using legally what people recognize as your name.

My name got misspelled on my birth certificate, a fact that I did not learn until my parents applied for my first passport when I was 9. My first passport uses the misspelling.

I got my learner’s permit to use the spelling that my parents intended, and which I had used for everything all my life, by showing a report card. So then it was on my driver’s license, and when I enlisted, it was on my dogtags and military ID.

But some functionary at my home unit set to changing everything on all my records to reflect the misspelling, because it was “on my birth certificate.”

So I asked the city clerk what I needed to do, and all I had to do was demonstrate that I’d used the one spelling all my life, and they’d issue me a corrected birth certificate. All I had to pay was the fee for the new birth certificate. No court date, or anything.

I asked if it would be that easy to “change my name.” Which is when she told me if I was changing it to something I was generally known as, depending on the circumstances, it might be very easy. The process was only hard if I were changing it to something brand new, because they wanted to make sure I wasn’t trying to commit fraud, then trotted out the line about “public interest.”

Lady Gaga might not be on her birth certificate, but if there’s ever a arrest warrant in her name, or a BOLO, for whatever reason, people should just be able to say “Lady Gaga,” without a long explanation of whom they are actually seeking.

Alice Cooper legally changed his name in the 60s. And has claimed that his mother is the only person not to adjust to calling him Alice. Which I can believe.

Destiny Hope Cyrus, whose childhood nickname was “Miley”, changed her name to Miley Ray Cyrus after becoming famous under that moniker.

Given my experience with name problems and RealID I strongly suspect this is no longer true.

Former major league pitcher John Paul “Boof” Bonser legally changed his first name to Boof in 2001.

Reginald Kenneth Dwight legally changed his name to Elton Hercules John.

James Earl Carter Jr was sworn in as President of the United States by his lifelong nickname Jimmy.

William Jefferson Clinton and Joseph Robinette Biden Jr were not sworn in as Bill and Joe.

Chad Johnson, a wide receiver in the NFL for many years, legally changed his name to Chad Ochocinco then legally changed it back several years later. I’m pretty sure that the Ochocinco (85, his number on the field) was a nickname that he gave himself.

Teller is the first one I think of, but that was said above. I heard him talk about having to show his driver’s license to a cop to prove his name was just “Teller”.

I actually thought John Legend changed his name to that, but I am not sure if it is a legal change.

Maverick pioneering dentist Edgar R.R. Parker practiced under the name Painless Parker. He legally changed his name to Painless Parker when competitors tried suing him, claiming his dentistry wasn’t truly painless.

I believe that Meat Loaf legally changed his name from whatever it was.

Former NFL receiver Mark Duper legally changed his middle name from Kirby to Super in 1985.

Rush bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee was born Gary Lee Weinrib. His parents were Polish Jews who had survived the Holocaust, and had emigrated to Canada after WWII. The name “Geddy” came about when his friends misinterpreted his mother saying “Gary” with a thick Polish accent; he adopted Geddy as his stage name, and eventually legally changed his name to Geddy Lee Weinrib.

I was in the exact same boat. I grew up with a middle name with 2 T’s, my birth certificate has only one. When I applied for my passport, I went to a small town to avoid the long wait. I showed the difference to the court clerk at the small town city hall, she said it would be no problem. She pulled up a form on her computer, filled in some info and printed out a couple copies. I signed them then she took them to the judge back in their small court room. The judge even brought the forms back to me, signed by him officially changing my middle name to the 2 T version. He congratulated me on my “name change” then we talked about my upcoming trip to New Zealand while the clerk finished my passport application. I have no need to change my birth certificate, all I have to do is show the court order if anyone questions the added to to my middle name.

No, Meat Loaf was born Marvin Lee Aday and legally changed his first name to Michael in 1984. Meat Loaf remains as the name he performs under.

I never have to use my birth certificate for anything, as long as I have a valid passport, but paying $10, which was all it was, to have to document with the correct spelling, was worth it to me.

No judge was involved, as far as I know, though; it was all done at the city or county office of records. I had documents going back to my birth announcement, my first grade report card, a photocopy from a school yearbook, a program from a play I was in, a cancelled check from an account I’d had in my early 20s, college ID, interpreter’s certificate, and so on, and so on. They just wanted evidence that I’d always used the spelling that was not in the records.

This is the one I came to talk about. Not only did he give the name to himself he changed his name so that the NFL would have to put it on his jersey

It very much depends on where you are , what correction you are making and when. For example, where I live to correct a hospital error before the first birthday ( the hospital spelled the name wrong) , you return the correction application to the hospital and no documentation is needed. If you need to correct ( or add) the first or middle name after the first birthday, and have no documentation that it was the hospital’s error , you can use the following documents

  1. Letter from hospital where child was born including child’s
    correct name, date of birth, and parent’s name(s).
    ( item 2 ) is not acceptable for this
  2. Immunization record showing child’s name, date of birth, parent
    name and the health care facility’s stamp.
  3. First census record taken after birth or census taken at least
    10 years ago (federal or state).
  4. Letter from physician including treatment dates.
  5. School admission letter including date of admission.
  6. Religious document.
  7. Child’s life insurance policy

There are different documentation requirements for different changes- but adding/correcting a first/middle name is pretty easy. But it is correcting- you can use that procedure if somehow the name on birth certificate is Anne but it should have been Ann or Dabid instead of David. To change it to a completely different name, say from Ethel to Jennifer you will need a court order.

Real ID has to do with Federal standards for ID that can be used to fly - it has nothing to do with standards for the issuance of birth certificates. Sure , in the end it makes it all somewhat pointless - but it’s also pointless that my state has to verify my address in order for me to use my DL as ID when I fly while I can also use my passport which does not even contain my address.