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Roxie Roker and Sy Kravitz Divorced after Their Son Lenny Kravitz Revealed His Father's Infidelity — Inside Their Story

Comfort Omovre
Jun 04, 2021
12:20 P.M.
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American singer and songwriter Lenny Kravitz has disclosed more about his parents and the part he played in their split in 1985. Find out about their story. 


On May 26, 1964, Lenny Kravitz said hello to the world. He arrived on earth as the first and only child of his parents, Roxie Roker, an actress, and Sy Kravitz, a retired military man and former NBC television news producer. 

Through his mom, Lenny is the second cousin of "Today" co-host and weather presenter Al Roker. Roxie is famous for starring as Helen Willis on the CBS sitcom "The Jeffersons," while Sy was a Green Beret in his military days. 

Lenny Kravitz with mother Roxie Roker attending the 1993 MTV Video Music Awards at Universal City on September 2, 1993. | Photo: Getty Images



Sy and Roxie tied the knot in 1962. Their marriage was an interracial marriage similar to Roxie's character's marriage in "The Jeffersons." The couple welcomed Lenny two years after and much of what the world knows about their marriage was told by him.

In October 2020, the musician released a memoir titled "Let Love Rule," where he made many revelations about his parents. He has also granted multiple interviews explaining his relationship with them. 

Actress Roxie Roker, best known for her role as Helen Willis on the sitcom "The Jeffersons," poses for a portrait session in circa 1982. | Photo:; Getty Images



In an episode of "Oprah's Master Class", Lenny described his mom as an extremely warm, incredibly loving woman who came from a very loving family. He also said she put others first and was incredibly kind and fair. 

Meanwhile, his father was a person with a lot of love and sensitivity but was really hardcore. He said Sy was a super disciplinarian and did not talk so much. He admitted to being afraid of him as a child. 

Lenny resolved his differences with him and took care of him on his dying bed.


According to Lenny, his father was affected by the way his own dad raised him. He further revealed that Sy changed as a person after his younger brother, Leonard, who Lenny was named after, died in the Korean War at 19 while defending against a Chinese attack. 

Many in the family blamed Sy for Leonard's death because the latter followed him to the military. That sort of situation contributed to changing him completely. 



In his memoir, Lenny revealed how he discovered his father was cheating on his mother.  He was still an aspiring musician in his 20s when he overheard his father conversing over the phone with a mistress. 

Lenny was angry with the situation and felt like hurting his father there and then. However, he controlled himself and reported his findings to his mom. The singer said he watched as his mom's soul fell to the floor after telling her. 

Roxie admitted Sy had been cheating on her throughout their marriage and narrated how she went to his mistresses' apartments with baby Lenny in her arms. 


She would buzz the intercom and ask them to tell her husband to come home as playtime was over. Despite knowing her husband was cheating, Roxie would not divorce him because of her Bahamanian upbringing that forbade divorces. 

Instead of a divorce, she employed a private investigator who dug deeper into Sy's infidelity. The private detective got pictures that incriminated Sy. The detective also got two round-trip tickets that Sy used to fly himself and his mistress to Paris on Concorde. 

Further revelations showed that Sy's mistress was a Black woman in her early 20s. She was a staff at Sy and Roxie's bank. With all the revelations staring him in the eyes, Sy confessed he was cheating on his wife.



Not long after Lenny's revelations to his mom, his parents' marriage came crashing. The superstar singer once told Piers Morgan on CNN about his dad's departure. 

He revealed that before saying goodbye to Sy, his mom had a family talk with him and his father. After saying some things, she asked Sy if he had anything to say to Lenny. 


However, instead of giving his son some words of advice, Sy told Lenny he would do the same things he did. Such prophetic words messed the young man up and would later impact his life. 

The words came to pass in 1987 when Lenny married actress Lisa Bonet. The couple divorced in 1993 amid infidelity rumors though they have remained close as they share a daughter, Zoe Kravitz. 



Before releasing his memoir, Lenny opened up to People about his relationship with his mom, who died of cancer in 1995. He revealed he was "mama's boy" and described her as a woman who never said bad words about anyone.

However, the "Fly Away" crooner had a complicated relationship with his father. Following Sy and Roxie's split, he became closer to his mom and his relationship with his dad suffered. 

Actress Roxie Roker, best known for her role as Helen Willis on the sitcom "The Jeffersons," poses for a portrait session in circa 1975. | Photo: Getty Images

When Sy became ill in 2005, Lenny resolved his differences with him and took care of him on his dying bed. He said his father had a spiritual awakening on his sickbed. 

Lenny also said his father's last month on earth was the best month of their lives and made up for everything that had transpired between them in the past.