News & Notes - 6/21/23 Eastsider

Roseville-Eastpointe Eastsider | Published June 22, 2023

Photo provided by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Josiah Trombley


Roseville resident serves in the U.S. Navy
KINGS BAY, GEORGIA — Eight years ago, Roseville native Travis Smith joined the U.S. Navy. Currently, Smith serves as a fire control technician with Trident Refit Facility, Kings Bay.

The petty officer second class is one of the sailors supporting a 123-year tradition of submarine service in the U.S. Navy.

“I joined the Navy because my brother convinced me that I could see the world,” Smith said in a U.S. Navy press release. “Now, I see it through a periscope lens. I also knew joining the Navy would give me better options in life. I knew that if I worked hard, I could make this a career.”

The Navy’s submarine force operates a large fleet of technically advanced vessels. The submarines are capable of conducting rapid defensive and offensive operations around the world.

As a submarine force member, Smith is part of the history of the U.S. Navy’s most versatile weapons platform.

“We protect the shipping lanes,” Smith said. “In reality, this helps protect your commerce needs so that you can receive items you purchase.”

Smith’s job is to track the most important contacts in the ocean and accurately target them. He is grateful to others for helping make a Navy career possible.

“I would like to thank my brother,” he said. “He served in the military since I was a kid, and I’ve always looked up to him. He’s a more senior enlisted sailor now and I’m trying to outrank him at some point.”


Leadership camp is for middle school students
EASTPOINTE — A free leadership camp for sixth, seventh and eighth graders will be held June 26-30 at Immanuel United Methodist Church, 23715 Gratiot Ave.

The camp will focus on empowering youth, strengthening life skills and character development, and it will include games and arts and crafts.

For more information, visit the CARE of Southeastern Michigan website at


Gleaners Food distribution set for June 29
EASTPOINTE — Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan will have food distribution at 9:30 a.m. June 29 at Eastpointe Middle School, 24701 Kelly Road. Gleaners provides meals to families in the community. For more information, visit the Gleaners website at


Teacher named ‘Distinguished Alumni’
EASTPOINTE — Last year, Eastpointe Community Schools created the Distinguished Alumni award as a way to honor alumni of East Detroit High School, which is now Eastpointe High School.

Eastpointe Middle School teacher Richard MacDonald, pictured third from left, was chosen as this year’s award recipient for 2023. MacDonald, known as Mr. Mac to his students, most recently taught science at Eastpointe Middle School.

MacDonald, a teacher in the district for more than 30 years, started at the former Oakwood Middle School. He graduated from EDHS in 1979. He retired from the district at the end of the 2022-23 school year.

Fifteen nominations from around the country were submitted this year. A group of four seniors and one staff member, also an alumnus, were on the selection committee. They read through the applications and chose MacDonald.

A small group of former students nominated MacDonald. According to the nomination form, the 2023 Distinguished Alumni spent many years coaching in addition to teaching. Over time, MacDonald became a mentor to many students and had “a lasting impact on his students and student/athletes.”   

Distinguished alumni nominees are graduates who have made a significant impact in the areas of academic excellence, career achievement, dedicated service or cultural enrichment.

A period of at least 15 years must have elapsed since the nominee graduated from EDHS. Individuals may be nominated posthumously. Nomination forms are available on the district’s website at

Earlier this year, MacDonald was named as the district’s Outstanding Middle School Teacher of the Year in the countywide annual Macomb Intermediate School District Teacher of the Year program.


Drumming up some Caribbean music
EASTPOINTE — A Caribbean steel drums presentation with professional drummers will be held June 28 at the Eastpointe Memorial Library, located at 15875 Oak Ave. The interactive program will begin at 6 p.m. Register at the circulation desk or by calling (586) 445-5096.