Leilani Kaye Waybenais, Age :47

Dec 16,1972---Jun 19,2020


Leilani Kaye Waybenais Shije, age 47 died unexpectedly Friday June 19, 2020 at UNM Hospital in Albuquerque NM. She was a beloved wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend. Leilani is a member of the Navajo/Ojibwa tribes. Lani was born December 16, 1972 in Shiprock NM, daughter to Marj Smith (Aron) and George Waybenais Jr. (Helene). Lani was also stepdaughter to Jerome Smith.

    Lani graduated from Farmington High School in Farmington NM. Lani furthered her education at Mr. Johns Beauty School, Phillip Junior College and Central New Mexico Community College. Lani had a unique personality and a one in a million soul. She spent her life making all those around her smile. She took great care of those closest to her. She was a very hard worker; life was never too busy for her.

    Lani married her soulmate Tuffo Shije on February 14, 2019. They reside in Albuquerque NM with their four dogs Milo, Shelly, Ivy Pearl, and Rocky. Lani endured many obstacles in life but overcame them with emotional strength. Her kindness and generosity touched many people. Her humor, love for her many animals, and dedication to her family will be greatly missed.

    Lani leaves behind her three children whom she loved with all her heart and soul Joshua, Gale (Dorothea), Jada Pierce and their father Robert. Lani also had two grandchildren Baby Gale and Devin who meant the world to her.

    In addition, Leilani is survived by her grandmother Pearl Daniels, brothers George Waybenais lll (Robin and family), Ward Waybenais and children, Michael Waybenais (Colleen and family), Tim Waybenais and family, Christopher Smith (Rolinda and family), Marshall Waybenais (Sheng Hua), Joseph Waybenais, and Cody Waybenais. Sisters include Michelle Waybenais Pierce (Jonathan and family), Timaris Montano and family, Becky Johnson and family, Dezbah Yepa (Jason and family), and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins. 


Arrangements entrusted to:

Riverside Funeral Home of Albuquerque

225 San Mateo Blvd. NE

(505) 764-9663



Shayleen Wisniewski Jun 29 ,2020

Dear family, I'm so sorry to hear of Lelani's passing. I send our condolences and pray that you will be comforted knowing that she is resting in peace with Our Heavenly Father. Shayleen