We remember the life of our devoted daughter, sister, mother, grandmother, auntie, cousin, caregiver, and friend, Leedessa Colbert Burns. She was a native Oregonian. She was born in Portland, Oregon, to Artchla Fay Allen and Earmie Lee Colbert on Sunday, July 26, 1970, at Bess Kaiser Hospital. Growing up, Leedessa was best known to her family as “Pampi” and later known to her good friends as “Dessa,” and she attended Whitaker Middle School, Jefferson High School, and Portland Community College.
Dessa trained as a skilled caregiver for the community working in the healthcare industry for more than 20 years, and most recently, she worked at Legacy as a licensed Certified Nursing Assistant. Pampi enjoyed spending time with her diverse multi-generational family and recently welcomed her seventh grandchild, she so lovingly called “chickadoo,” in December 2020. Pampi was the life and energy of any gathering. She spent her free time away from work, maintaining her home, and finding creative and fun ways to stay organized.
Leedessa was preceded in death by her father, Earmie Lee Colbert, Brother Wayne Colbert, and Sister Annette Thatcher, and the father of her three children, and love of her life, Earl Lee Montgomery Sr.
Leedessa leaves her precious memories to her Son, Earl Lee Montgomery Jr., Daughters Lanique Montgomery, and Tiffany Montgomery, Mother Artchla Fay Patroni (Victor), and Sisters Vanessa Davis (Quinn), Cassandra James (William), Althea Sails (Maury Sr.), Kathleen Colbert Mitchell, all of Portland, Oregon. Freda Smith and Wanda Smith, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Brother, Alonzo Colbert of Vancouver, Washington, and grandchildren, J’San Montgomery-Saechao, Jailyn Montgomery-Price, Anisa Montgomery-Binion, Miyoko Montgomery-Binion, Harmony Williams, Earl Lee Montgomery III, and Ji’Raiya Montgomery-Vaughn, and many treasured aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, in-laws, friends, co-workers, and patients around the Pacific Northwest and beyond.
Leedessa touched the lives of many people with her bold personality and natural sense of compassion that lit up a room. She will be truly missed. On behalf of the family, we thank everyone for their sincere visits, thoughtful calls, caring thoughts, lovely cards, beautiful flowers, sitting by our side, and powerful prayers; whatever you did to console our hearts, we thank you so much for your contributions to healing our hearts.
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