Little Caesars Founder Secretly Paid Rosa Parks’ Rent For Over A Decade

Mike Ilitch, the Little Caesars founder and Detroit Tigers owner who died last Friday secretly made an impact on the daily life of civil rights icon Rosa Parks. For over ten years Ilitch secretly paid Parks’ rent after she was assaulted in her apartment. After the assault, she was relocated to a safer neighborhood in downtown Detroit.

News of this generous act was made public when federal judge and friend, Damon Keith, paid homage to his late friend.

“They don’t go around saying it, but I want to, at this point, let them know, how much the Ilitches not only meant to the city, but they meant so much for Rosa Parks, who was the mother of the civil rights movement,”Keith shared.

Keith was instrumental in finding safe housing for Parks after she was robbed and assaulted in her apartment at the age of 81. Once Ilitch learned of the assault he contacted Keith, offered to cover Parks’ rent and continued to pay it until her death in 2005.


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I am a digital content creator and have worked in the digital space for more than ten years. "Robinrazzi" is a nickname given from a former colleague because I'm known for having a camera in hand at all times. I have traveled the world covering entertainment events, celebrities and anything trending. I earned my BA in Communications from Penn State and a MS in Marketing from Johns Hopkins University. I currently serve as Director of Digital Content for WHUR and the Howard University Radio Network.

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