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Woodward Talk

Published March 30, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — She is recognized by her stern face, her red polka dot bandana, her blue work shirt and flexing forearm.

The “she” is Rosie the Riveter, who generations have identified with as a symbol of women’s efforts during World War II.

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Published March 30, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — As part of a three-day symposium hosted by FranklinCovey Education at Macomb Community College, approximately 60 educators from across the country paid a visit to Cherokee Elementary School on March 22 to learn about the school’s “Leader in Me” program.

Cherokee Principal Lynn Mair said the visit gave the school an opportunity to show how it implements leadership practices through instruction. 

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Published March 30, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Sometimes wearing a suit and tie every day can be a tedious venture.

Yet when Clinton Township Civic Center employees dress casually once a week, they’re not simply doing it for their own comfort, but to benefit others in the process.

Debbie Staller, administrative aide to the board of trustees, said the idea started more than a decade ago when employees and administrators discussed a way they could have casual days at work while benefiting local charities and organizations.

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Published March 28, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — A 31-year-old Detroit man is expected to spend the rest of his life behind bars for his role in a fatal 2015 party store shooting.

On Feb. 26, a Macomb County Circuit Court jury found Albert McKinley IV guilty of first-degree felony murder, felony armed robbery and felony conspiracy to commit armed robbery.

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Published March 28, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — McGlinnen Elementary, part of Clintondale Community Schools, has put a twist on its annual celebration of March is Reading Month — a statewide literacy program propelled by the Michigan Department of Education that encourages parents and teachers to push students to be more inclined to read different kinds of material.

The month-long endeavor has been around for at least two decades, said Cathy Lamont, McGlinnen Elementary principal for the past 13 years. It takes place throughout the Clintondale school district and beyond.

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Published March 23, 2016

FRASER — Five 21-year-old musicians from metro Detroit are doing their best to imitate their favorite musicians, and yet create a product all their own.

If Walls Could Talk is the name of the group that aims to make a splash in the music scene.

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Published March 23, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — A conservative but consistent fiscal year budget was recently approved by Clinton Township’s Board of Trustees.

The unanimous vote occurred at the March 7 meeting, following a presentation by Finance Director Donna Lauretti and Assistant Finance Director Mary Hein.

Much of the presentation focused on the township’s general fund, police and fire funds, water and sewer department, and retiree health care.

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Published March 23, 2016

FRASER — The more the water flows, the more citizens want to know where their money is going.

Numerous municipalities are feeling the pressure of heightened water rates, whether it’s a consequence of the Great Lakes Water Authority or local surcharges that are imposed by city officials.

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Published March 23, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Over the course of four days in late February and early March, more than 415 individuals connected to Chippewa Valley Schools were interviewed by a team from AdvancED, a global accreditation service.

While the district’s schools had already received accreditation individually, the purpose of AdvancED’s visit was to seek systemwide accreditation as a whole district.

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Published March 21, 2016

MACOMB COUNTY — The land of the free and home of the brave got quite a few new citizens in southeast Michigan.

On March 11, at the Macomb Intermediate School District building in Clinton Township, hundreds gathered to witness 45 individuals from 17 countries and five continents declare their oath of allegiance and become United States citizens.

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Published March 16, 2016

FRASER — Police believe alcohol was involved in a March 12 fatal car accident.

The incident took place around 1:40 a.m. on Groesbeck Highway, south of 14 Mile Road.

Kyle Kumbo, 24, was reportedly driving his 2004 Buick SUV on northbound Groesbeck, with his girlfriend sitting in the passenger seat. Fraser Lt. Mike Pettyes said a 1996 Lincoln Mark VIII with four people was stopped at a red light in the middle through lane.

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Published March 16, 2016

DETROIT/MACOMB COUNTY — The next chapter in the saga of the Flamingo Motel is currently underway.

A lawsuit was recently filed in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Michigan, in Detroit, in which plaintiffs Eric Gala and Chester Gala have sued numerous parties on multiple grounds.

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Published March 16, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — More than 20 restaurants and gourmet markets will be the feature attraction of the sixth annual Chippewa Valley Educational Foundation Taste Fest.

Taste Fest is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. March 23 at Zuccaro Banquets and Catering,  46601 Gratiot Ave. in Chesterfield Township.

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Published March 16, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — The dilapidated pavement surrounding the Clinton Township Civic Center will experience a facelift in the coming months.

The project, which will address reconstruction needs as well as other changes, has no specific timetable currently and will cost an estimated $1.9 million.

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Published March 14, 2016

FRASER — It was difficult to find a dry eye March 10 at Twain Elementary.

The entire K-6 student body, along with teachers and Principal Ed Skowneski, were packed into the school’s gymnasium to watch students from another school perform jump rope tricks as part of the Jump Rope for Heart initiative to benefit the American Heart Association.

After nearly a half hour of entertainment, Army Sgt. 1st Class Mark English, dressed in his fatigues, snuck into the gymnasium through a door facing the students’ backs.

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Published March 10, 2016

WEST BLOOMFIELD/CLINTON TOWNSHIP — A Columbus Township family is leaping for joy after welcoming their second child to be born on a Leap Day. 

Evelyn Croff, daughter of Chad and Melissa Croff, was born at Henry Ford Macomb Hospital in Clinton Township at 3:06 a.m. Feb 29. She was 6 pounds 9 ounces. Evelyn shares a birthday with her big sister, Eliana, who was born at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital at 3:33 a.m. Feb. 29, 2012. The family lived in Commerce Township at the time of Eliana’s birth.

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Published March 9, 2016

MACOMB COUNTY — A 25-year-old man who shot a toddler in a Clinton Township park last year has pleaded guilty to four charges relating to the matter.

On Feb. 16 in Macomb County Circuit Court, Christian Eric-Deandre Howard pleaded guilty to charges of second-degree child abuse, receiving and concealing a firearm, possessing a firearm during the act of a felony, and careless discharge of a firearm that leads to injury or death.

The only non-felony charge involved the discharge of the firearm.

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Published March 9, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — After nearly two weeks of investigating, Clinton Township police declared that an abduction attempt from the morning of March 9 involving a Clintondale Middle School student never actually happened.

On March 21, the department released a press release stating, “Clinton Township police thoroughly investigated this incident, and the student has confessed that she made the story up. The reason for the false report was that the student was having issues with being tardy to school.”

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Published March 9, 2016

FRASER — All Kelly Jenks wanted was for her sixth-grade Salk Elementary class to appreciate and respect military veterans.

But in doing so, the teacher received quite a bit of gratitude in return.

On Feb. 23, Jenks was inundated with praise by members of Fraser VFW Post 6691, and also received admiration from the very students she teaches.

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Published March 9, 2016

FRASER — A Clinton Township man is being held in jail after he allegedly caused the death of two individuals.

Valon Gjykaj, 21, faces felony counts of driving without a license and reckless driving causing death after a Feb. 6 car accident led to the deaths of two men, one of whom was his father.

He was arraigned Feb. 23 in 39th District Court in Roseville. At press time, he was held on a $50,000 cash/surety bond, with no 10 percent. He faces 15 years in jail.

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