State Roundup

Slain Mich. soldier remembered as ‘true leader’

FRASER, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan soldier killed in an explosion in Afghanistan was a “true leader” who showed his potential to fill such a role from a young age, his father said.

The Defense Department announced Friday that 25-year-old 1st Lt. Todd Lambka, of the Detroit suburb of Fraser, died Wednesday when an improvised explosive device detonated in Paktika province. Pvt. 1st Class Jesus Lopez, 22, of San Bernardino, Calif., also was killed, the military said.

“Todd was a great kid, a true leader. He died doing what he believed in, and what he felt he was born to do,” Brian Lambka told The Macomb Daily of Mount Clemens.

Todd Lambka and Lopez were assigned to the 1st Battalion, 28th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division in Fort Riley, Kan.

“He wanted to lead men, his troops,” Brian Lambka said. “That was his whole goal. ... He loved leading.”

Todd Lambka graduated from Eisenhower High School in Shelby Township in 2006 and graduated in 2010 from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. He and his twin brother, Jordan, both demonstrated leadership skills as early as in their teens, their father said.

Jordan Lambka also joined the military, and Brian Lambka said they wanted to be a part of the fight against terrorism.

“I think every parent is surprised when their son or daughter makes that decision, but their love of country is the reason why they’re willing to go over there,” Brian Lambka said. “He thought defending the country was very noble. This is what my kids were called to do.”

Funeral arrangements were pending at Wasik Funeral Home, in Warren.

Mount Clemens
Macomb plans to offer online jury check-in on iPads

MOUNT CLEMENS, Mich. (AP) — Potential jurors in one southeast Michigan county soon might be able to check in electronically using iPads, kiosks or computers at participating locations near the courts.

The Detroit Free Press reports check-in stations would allow Macomb County jurors to shop or eat in downtown Mount Clemens while waiting to be called for duty.

The check-in system and a plan to pay jurors on the same day of service could start next year. Eventually, county officials plan to allow jurors to use their own smartphones to check in. It’s part of an effort by Clerk/Register of Deeds Carmella Sabaugh and others to improve jury service.

The county says the idea is borrowed from airline check-in. Jurors would be summoned as needed via text, email or phone call.

Lung transplant recipient finishes 214-mile trek

MUSKEGON, Mich. (AP) — A recipient of a double lung transplant has completed a 214-mile trek across Michigan. reports 27-year-old Kyle Bailey arrived Sunday in the West Michigan community of Muskegon, three days after leaving Port Huron. Bailey has cystic fibrosis. Before the transplant in June 2011 he found it difficult to even walk across a room, let alone pound the pavement for miles.

As the Port Huron man watched the sun begin to set over Lake Michigan, he said: “Oh, it is gorgeous.”

The Times Herald of Port Huron reports the idea for the walk was to raise money and awareness for Gift of Life, Michigan’s organ and tissue donation program, as well as the battle against cystic fibrosis.

Before the trek, Bailey said he “wanted to give back” after his transplant.


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