Merle Jameson Wakonabo, age 49, of Bena, MN, began his spiritual journey on Tuesday, June 12, 2018, at his home.
Merle, the 2nd of identical twins, was born on April 3, 1969, in Sauk Center, MN. He grew up in Inger, MN, and graduated from Chief Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig School in 1987. He worked several different jobs including: slot technician and blackjack dealer at the casino, custodian at Red Lake High and Bug Schools, a ricer and balsam picker, birch bark carver, and carpenter. He was care taker of his grandparents and parents in their later years. Merle was very friendly and outgoing and always helping anyone in need. He especially enjoyed taking care of and spending time with his children.
Merle is survived by his identical twin brother, Myron (Melissa) Wakonabo as well as several half brothers and sisters; sons, Ryan Ojibwe, and Makoons, Mark, Tyrell, Thomas, and Merle III Wakonabo; daughters, Theresa, Mya, Esther, Marissa, Tasheen, and Jenny Wakonabo; 4 grandchildren; and nieces and nephews, Cindy, Jessey, Charles, Dominic, and Hunter; as well as his significant other Grace Wakonabo and many other cousins and friends.
Family members waiting to greet Merle include his son, Merle Wakonabo, Jr.; parents, Mark and Esther Wakonabo; sister, Chanel Wakonabo; grandparents, Charles and Mary Spike; and nephew, Myron Wakonabo, Jr.
An overnight wake for Merle will begin at noon on Saturday, June 16, 2018, at the Red Lake Community Center with a traditional funeral service being held at 11 am on Monday, June 18, 2018. Waa-maajaa’iwed – Steve Jackson. Burial will take place at the Red Lake Cemetery after the service. Pall bearers are Henry Wakonabo, Kenny Lussier, Adrian Sayers, Mike Cloud, Jerome Roy, Ron Lahnam, and Makoons Wakonabo, and honorary pall bearers, all family and friends.
Merle’s care has been entrusted to Northern Peace Funeral Home of Walker. Online condolences for the family may be left at www.northernpeace.com