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The ‘Secret Sauce’ Behind Omar & Keisha Epps’ Nearly 30-Year Love Story
Culture & Entertainment

The ‘Secret Sauce’ Behind Omar & Keisha Epps’ Nearly 30-Year Love Story

Omar Epps might have had his claim to fame in the 90s, starring in Black film classics like Juice, The Wood, Higher Learning, and who could forget Love & Basketball? But these days, the 50-year-old actor has also added writing to his repertoire. Omar recently published his second book, a dystopian novel, Nubia: The Reckoning. When he is not writing or starring in Power Book III: Raising Kanan, something else Omar has a lot of passion and purpose in is his love for his rock, his wife, Keisha Epps.

In a recent conversation with PEOPLE for their “One Last Thing” column, the author made sure to show love to his long-time partner, Keisha Epps, in a question that prompted him to recall the last time he danced. “My wife and I were at an event, and she was looking great, so I had to take her hand and cut a rug,” Omar told the mag.


The simple but sweet moment was a reminder of just how vocal Omar is from time to time, either through social media or in various interviews, about his love and appreciation for his soulmate. R&B singer and one-third of the R&B group Total, Keisha Spivey and Omar, have been married since 2006, an achievement the actor credits taking “breaking up off the table” for.

In a 2022 interview, Omar opened up about the “secret sauce” to a nearly 20-year marriage.

Leon Bennett/WireImage

“Our little secret sauce is we took breaking up off the table,” he said in the interview. “And what that did for me personally, I can’t speak for her, but what that did for me was it changed the way that we had conflict … We still bump heads from time to time. We do it in such a respectful way.”

Omar and Keisha have had years of practice to get the recipe behind their secret sauce to marital bliss a success. After meeting and briefly dating in 1992, the pair broke up, and Keisha would become “the one who got away” for many years for Omar in his heart and his mind. He had other relationships, including one with Love & Basketball co-star Sanaa Lathan and a romantic relationship that led to the birth of his oldest daughter, Aiyanna, in 1999.

But fate would have Omar and Keisha crossing romantic paths once more, and by the early 2000s, the couple had their first child, a daughter, K'marie, in 2004. In 2006, they wed. And in 2007, they welcomed their second child, a son named Amir.

In 2018, while promoting his self-published memoir, From Fatherless to Fatherhood, Omar spoke to The Hollywood Reporter about his writing process, his upbringing, his beliefs around fatherhood, and the passing of his father and his oldest child Aiyanna’s mother’s passing, which was recent at the time. When asked by the interviewer how his wife was navigating everything, Omar didn’t hesitate to show praise.

“She’s amazing. There’s no question that that’s my soulmate. She anchors me in a way that I can only relate emotionally is like how I feel anchored by my mom. That’s the weight of what I feel; this connection to another person. She is family. …
“Keisha taught me how to smell the roses, which is one of the most important things in life. Like through her, I really am still learning, but I’ve learned how to become present, because I’m an artist. I’m constantly in my head and she’s helped me be more present. She loves hard … and she’s taught me a lot, about everything.”

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

In the past, Keisha has referred to her husband as her “forever love.” In a 2020 Instagram post, she captioned a photo of the two of them from an album release party in 1996. “We were friends. He was my best friend. But the very first time we met? Was truly like something out of a movie🙏🏽 I mean really,” she explained in her caption.

“No LOVE comes without its challenges just as no life comes without its challenges. But when you are with your soulmate, the person you are meant to share forever with, LOVE becomes that much more beautiful and worth doing the work for. I’m connected to a beautiful & special soul.”

In 2021, Omar took to Instagram to share a throwback photo of him and his wife Keisha with the caption, “We been ten toes down for damn near thirty years now. It’s just that everything ain’t for the public…”

Just last month, Omar posted a carousel of selfies of Keisha and captioned the post, “My completion. My muse. My forever love. We were, we are, and always will be. @lovekeishaepps I love you beyond time itself, and I’m truly thankful for our journey together in this life and beyond…”

Keisha commented underneath the post, writing in response to her love, "🥹…My love, you took the feeling, thoughts and words from my heart❤️ God knows my LOVE & joy for YOU King.❤️❤️❤️❤️💋💋💋💋 An ordained LOVE, a blessed union🙏🏽🫶🏽."

Awww. Don't you just love Black love?

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Featured image by Leon Bennett/WireImage

 

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