Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Leonard "Jess" Headbird, Jr.


November 17, 2021

Leonard "Jess" Headbird, Jr.

January 28, 1946 ~ November 14, 2021 (age 75)

Leonard "Jess" Headbird, Jr., "Mikinaak" which means "Turtle", 75, of the Bear Clan and from Cass Lake, Minnesota began his journey to the spirit world on Sunday, November 14th, 2021, at Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, MN. He was born to Katherine (Belcourt) and Leonard Headbird, Sr. in Cass Lake, MN on Monday, January 28th, 1946.

Jess loved to spend time with his huge, beautiful family. He enjoyed hunting, jamming with his brother's band Red Cedar Lake, watching his nephews drive stock cars and following the Cass Lake-Bena Basketball team. He loved being on the powwow trail and his traditional ceremonies. He was always willing to help anyone in need. Jess was cracking jokes every chance he got and always had a smile on his face or was laughing. He enjoyed driving around with his wife and baby girl Melanie. They would travel anywhere to let her see animals and bring her on new adventures. Jess was a kind, strong and amazing man that we all loved and will cherish always. He will be missed by every person that has met him.

Family that welcomes Jess to the spirit world are his son; Pete Headbird, parents; Katherine and Leonard Headbird, Sr., grandparents; Charlie and Sarah Headbird, brothers; Gordon "Gabby" and Charles "Chuck" Headbird, sister; Gloria Wind, several aunts, uncles and friends.

Those left behind to carry on Jess' legacy are his wife, Andrea Headbird of Cass Lake, children; Vincent Parks of Salem, MO, Lenny (Maddie) Parks, Dennis Brown, Jeffrey Brown, Donald (Sarah) Headbird, Bob (Dawn) Jaspers, Tina Headbird, Jesse (Salone) Headbird, Jessica (Melvin) Headbird all of Cass Lake, Jacob (Alexis) Headbird of Bemidji, David (Calvin) Otremba of Cass Lake, James (Denise) Otremba of Wisconsin, Kelly and Andrianna Whipple both of Cass Lake, brothers; Donald "Donnie" (Nikki) Headbird of Cass Lake, Melvin (Shelly) Goodman of Pennington and Randy Finn of Cass Lake, special granddaughter; Melanie Rose, many grandchildren and great grandchildren, other relatives and his friends.

Wake services for Jess will begin at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 18th and continue until his 10:00 a.m. traditional service on Saturday, November 20th all taking place at the Mission Community Center in Cass Lake, MN. Allen Hardy and Melvin Goodman will be his Spiritual Advisors. Laying Jess to rest will be Jacob Headbird, Lucas Headbird, Damien Kingbird, DJ Headbird, Kelly Whipple, Lenny Parks, Jr., Ken Thompson, and David Otremba. The alternate pallbearers are Bob Jaspers, Brandon Headbird, Gordon Fineday and Donahue Wittner. His honorary pallbearers are all his family and close friends. Interment will be in the Prince of Peace Cemetery at Cass Lake/Mission, MN following his Saturday services.

Jess' care has been entrusted to Northern Peace Funeral Home of Walker, MN. Online condolences for the family be left at




November 18, 2021

7:00 PM

Mission Community Center

Mission Road

Mission/Cass Lake, Minnesota 56633

Traditional American Indian Service


November 20, 2021

10:00 AM

Mission Community Center

Mission Road

Mission/Cass Lake, Minnesota 56633


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