DETROIT (WCMH) — For more than a decade, Little Caesars founder and Detroit Tigers owner Mike Ilitch quietly supported one of the most iconic figures in the civil rights movement.
Ilitch, who died last Friday, was known for the charitable work he did in the city of Detroit. According to CNN affiliate WXYZ, Ilitch paid for Rosa Parks’ rent for more than 10 years.
In an interview with Sports Business Daily, Judge Damon Keith describes how Ilitch called him in 1994 and offered to help Parks had been robbed and assaulted in her home in Detroit that year, at the age of 81. Judge Keith and developer Alfred Taubman helped find her a safer home.
Ilitch read an article in the paper about Keith and Taubman’s efforts and called the judge, offering to pay for Parks’ housing for as long as necessary. Parks died in 2005.
Read more on CNN.com.