Detroit-area man dies in Keweenaw

HOUGHTON – Drowning is believed to be the most likely cause of death of a Michigan man found in Lake Superior near Gay Friday afternoon.

The Keweenaw County Medical Examiner’s office is investigating the death of Paul Lempke.

“At this point, she tentatively believes it was a drowning, but the final report isn’t complete,” said Sheriff Ron Lahti.

Lempke, 48, of Eastpointe, Mich., had last been seen about 11 p.m. Thursday, when he had gone for a walk while camping with friends at the Kauppi resort and campground on the Gay-Lac La Belle Road. He was last seen walking along a break wall near the resort docks.

They had arrived at the campsite after dark, and were making their first visit to the area, Lahti said.

“Not knowing the area, and walking around on that pier after dark, contributed to falling off the pier into the water,” he said.

The Keweenaw County Sheriff’s Office was called in to investigate about 9:30 a.m. Friday.

The sheriff’s office conducted a search, assisted by Superior Search and Rescue and Department of Natural Resources aircraft. About 4 p.m., sheriff’s office personnel found Lempke’s body near the docks.