James Michalina, 61, Vietnam War veteran, loving husband
Published - 11/28/12 - 04:12 PM | 6371 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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James R. “Jimmy” Michalina passed away on the morning of Nov. 15 from pancreatic cancer. He fought the good fight. His wife, Liz, was at his side.

He was 61.

Jimmy was born and raised in Rome, N.Y. He enlisted in the Army in 1969 and served in the Vietnam War as a door gunner on a Huey helicopter. Jimmy was extremely proud of his military service and was a proud veteran of 40 years.

After getting out of the Army, Jimmy moved to San Diego. He worked at BAE Systems San Diego Ship Repair (formerly Southwest Marine) for 28 years. He was well respected and very highly regarded by everyone on the San Diego waterfront.

Jimmy married the love of his life, Liz Lemke, on Nov. 14, 1987 and the couple has just celebrated its 25th wedding anniversary. Jimmy was a wonderful husband, a great friend and loved to ride his Harley (“Big Blue”). He truly was one of the good guys. He will be fondly remembered and sorely missed by so many.

Jimmy is survived by his wife, Liz; sister Joanne Marsh of Cicero, N.Y.; sister Cookie Izzo of Rome, N.Y.; brother Joe Michalina of Creedmoor, N.C.; son James Michalina Jr. of Kennewick, Wash.; daughter Dianna Pankey of Riverside; nieces, nephews and countless friends.

A memorial celebration of Jimmy’s life will be held at a later date.
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