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Michael Achterling

Multimedia News Lead

Multimedia Lead Reporter for the Detroit Lakes Tribune and the Perham Focus.

Michael graduated in 2020 with a Bachelor's Degree in professional journalism from the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities. During his time at the UMN, Michael covered state legislature for the Minnesota Daily and interned at the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

He is also a veteran of the U.S. Navy where he served, from 2011 to 2015, as a Mass Communication Specialist in Boston, Mass., aboard the U.S.S. Constitution, and in Sasebo, Japan, assigned to the U.S.S. Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6).

Michael is originally from Apple Valley, Minnesota and is a proud graduate of the School of Environmental Studies, and Eastview High School.

When not in the newsroom, Michael enjoys spending time his dog: Pepper. He is also an avid video gamer, baseball purist, entertainment sponge, who also dabbles in table-top games.

Email story ideas to Michael at machterling@dlnewspapers.com and follow on Twitter @machterling.

Recent stories by Michael Achterling
The United States Space Force adopted "Sempra Supra" as the official anthem of the military branch in a video released on Sept. 20. Check out the new anthem below and also hear from Gen. John "Jay" Raymond, Chief of Space Operations, on how the song came to be.
"One of the old things we used to say is the lake is not a bathtub, it doesn't just lay at one level," said Pete Boulay, a climatologist with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. "What I always point out, when people complain that (water levels) have never been this low, just go back farther and you'll find lower water than you have right now."
As more health facilities acquire 3-D mammogram technology, providers are seeing an increased detection in noninvasive breast cancer and a sharp reduction in the need for patient recalls. Every woman, especially those with dense breast tissue — which includes 40% of all women — can benefit from having a 3-D mammogram, according to the lead mammographer at Essentia Health St. Mary's in Detroit Lakes.
The Detroit Record used to advertise hair food. Yes, you read that right. Ayer's Hair Vigor, food for the hair that cured dandruff, falling hair and restored all of the hair's rich color of early life was advertised in a 1905 issue of the paper, but as one Sanford Health family nurse practitioner said, men experiencing baldness today should probably stick to Rogaine or Minoxidil.
Two trains were involved in a derailment west of Frazee on Feb. 17; blocking rail traffic in both directions between Frazee and Detroit Lakes. No injuries were reported at the scene and nearby residents were evacuated by law enforcement as a precaution while investigators assess the content of the derailed cars.
The man, whose name has not yet been released, had not responded to any messages or phone calls from family members for several days.
These traveling nurses book their temporary contracts, usually about 13 weeks, through various agencies and can make as much in a week as a regular staff nurse earns in a month, according to one of the travelers. However, a human resources director at Essentia Health said much of the demand is being driven by the pandemic and, once the case numbers recede, many of those contractual positions will no longer be necessary.
A 21-year-old Osage man was killed in a single vehicle rollover crash near mile marker 61 on Highway 34 in Carsonville Township, near Osage, Minn., on Sept. 22, 2021. The driver was the sole occupant in the vehicle at the time of the rollover and was not wearing his seatbelt. Alcohol is believed to have played a role in the crash, according to a Minnesota State Patrol incident report.
A 79-year-old woman was found dead in the remnants of a house fire near Frazee on Sept. 20. By the time firefighters arrived at the scene, most of the structure was burnt to the ground and only minimal active flames remained, according to the Frazee Fire Department.
A bison that had broken loose from a nearby property in Waubun, Minnesota, was killed with the approval of the animal's owner because it had been off the property for too long to return safely.
With headliners Florida Georgia Line, Dierks Bentley and Blake Shelton bringing concertgoers to their feet over the weekend, WE Fest General Manager Mark Bjerke says they were quite pleased with the overall attendance and feedback they received, and are already looking ahead to 2022.
WE Fest officially kicked-off Wednesday night, Aug. 4, 2021 with a pre-festival bash featuring performances on the Barn Stage and dancing in the Ranch House. On Thursday, Aug. 5, emerging artist Ingrid Andress performed on the Main Stage as one of the opening acts for first night headliner Florida Georgia Line.
While stream beds and topsoil in the area may be running dry, it hasn't affected the water levels of area lakes, according to officials.
The 2007 murder of Chad Swedberg in rural Ogema will be featured on the next episode of "Reasonable Doubt," an ID Network show that re-examines controversial murder cases, on Monday, July 19 at 9 p.m. Kenneth Andersen has been serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole after being convicted of Swedberg's murder in 2008.
Frazee, Detroit Lakes, Wolf Lake and Vergas firefighters battled a large blaze for nearly 6 hours at a large hog containment building outside of Frazee on Friday night, July 9. All farm personnel were evacuated from the building, but up to 7,500 hogs were killed due to fire and smoke inhalation, according to a law enforcement incident report.
Hundreds of water protectors, Indigenous leaders and activists gathered on County Road 9 in Clearwater County, about 20 miles southwest of Bemidji, to protest construction of the Enbridge Line 3 oil pipeline on June 7, 2021. After marching for nearly 2 miles from their staging area to the Mississippi River, indigenous leaders spoke to the crowd and demanded political leaders hear their voices over environmental, and other, concerns about continued construction of Enbridge's pipeline.
The Minnesota Department of Corrections issued an advisory on June 2 seeking the public's assistance in locating an escaped inmate, Robert Thomas Baca. The escapee was serving the remainder of his Minnesota sentence under supervised release in California, administered by the California Department of Corrections in San Bernardino.
Becker County Sheriff's Office K-9 Durman received custom fitted body armor from Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. The vest was sponsored by Ashley Fletcher, of Hawley weighs 4 to 5 pounds and will protect the dog from bullet, or stab, wounds.
The Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry required TBCT Management LLC, owners of Spitfire Bar and Grill in Detroit Lakes, to pay back 52 employees for forced tip-pooling, according to a statement from the MN DLI. Each employee received an average of $282 in back wages.
After the fire, Arnie and Tammy Krejce received a phone call from someone in the community, who wishes to remain anonymous, who said the family could stay at his vacant home in the area for the next few months until they get back on their feet.
The owner of Hooligans Lakeside, on Becker County Highway 6, south of Lake Park, Minn., said, he's cut more than 90% of his staff since pandemic began and doesn't understand why large retailers are allowed to operate in Minnesota, but the small bars and restaurants are not.
The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine was administered to 10 health care workers at White Earth Health Center, near Ogema, Minn., Tuesday with additional vaccinations occurring throughout the week to more staff members until the center's initial allotment of 120 doses is completed.
The boy was found dead in the yard by Otter Tail Sheriff's Office deputies, near Battle Lake, after a dog attack has been identified as 14-year-old Deon Bush.
The Becker County Sportsmen's Club on Highway 10 east of Detroit Lakes completed an $18,000 barrier wall refurbishment to their shooting ranges. The project more than doubled the range backstop height to nearly 14 feet, which makes the ranges safer and more appealing to novice shooters.
The victim is a 75-year-old man from Lake Park.
Paul Sandstrom was last seen heading for his tree stand on his family's hunting grounds near Gardner Lake, north of Ponsford, Minn., on Sunday Nov. 8. His body was discovered two days later by search and rescue workers, but for Paul's legacy, his family only needs to look into the woods that he loved so much.
The Detroit Lakes man, who was pulled from the Pelican River Saturday, Nov. 14, near the Quality Inn and Suites on Highway 10, died of an apparent drowning and showed no signs of foul play, according to police.
A hunter failed to show up at his group's agreed-upon meeting time and location on Sunday, Nov. 8, and was reported missing in the Gardner Lake-area, near Bad Medicine Lake, north of Ponsford, Minn., in northern Becker County.
Supporters of both President Trump and former Vice President Biden will be holding competing parades, passing through Detroit Lakes and the surrounding communities along Highway 10 and Highway 59, on Oct. 10 and 11 in an effort gain support and enhance camaraderie among group members ahead of Election Day.
Detroit Mountain, off State Highway 34 in Becker County, will implement new reservation procedures, lift ticket requirements and indoor chalet protocols in preparation for a safe winter ski season during the COVID-19 era. Skiers and snowboarders will need to book their lift tickets in advance before heading to the mountain this year, according to the new guidelines.

MAHNOMEN, Minn. — The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is assisting the White Earth Tribal Police Department in an investigation into the death of a 32-year-old woman in Mahnomen County.