Sawyer's aunt, Mayetta Jackson of Chicago, clearly remembers when the name was picked in 1972. The newborn's mother and father were products of the post-Woodstock era when reefer was rampant.
"And they would cool off with a Pepsi," she said, which makes you think it's lucky for Sawyer that it wasn't Coke instead. "I thought it was crazy," her aunt said about the name, "but they were such fun-loving people that it suited them."
Ms. Sawyer's story does have some elements of the Johnny Cash song.
She gives a surprising amount of credit to her mother for making her resilient and resourceful. "She instilled in me that fighting attitude - never take no, you can do anything," Sawyer said.
By high school, her name was cool to many. "They were like, 'Oh yeah. Man, I wish I had your name. I love that. I'm going to name my kid after you.' I hear that so much and I go, Lord, please don't do that to that child."
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(image credit: Jeffrey Phelps)