Heddy is Milkman’s great-grandmother and Sing’s mother. When Solomon tries to take Jake with him to Africa, he accidentally brushes against a tree as he’s leaving, and Jake the baby slips out of his hands. Heddy has always wanted a baby boy, so she takes Jake in. Ryna, Jake’s mother, doesn’t notice because she has 20 mouths to feed and is mourning the loss of her husband. Heddy is Native American and has no husband. Susan Byrd is Heddy’s granddaughter.