an example of the
new Max M. Fisher
road signs are
Stanley Wolf, 11, of
(Jane and Larry
son) and Blake
Fisher, 10, of
Fisher Memorial Highway
30-mile stretch of Telegraph named in memory of Max Fisher.
few yards from the bustle and
hum of mid-day traffic, legend-
ary mega-philanthropist Max
M. Fisher was commemorated in a May 5
ceremony that renamed a 30-mile portion
of Telegraph Road "Max Fisher Memorial
About 30 family members and friends
met in the front parking lot of the Max M.
Fisher Federation Building in Bloomfield
Township for the short, private ceremony.
Fisher, a Franklin resident, died on
March 3, 2005, at age 96. He was a leader
of world Jewry as well as a renowned
industrialist, philanthropic stalwart and a
From humble beginnings in the 1930s
with partners Henry Wegner and Bill
Slaughter, Fisher built the Aurora Gasoline
refining company into a business that
included 680 Speedway 79 service sta-
tions and the Scipio oil fields in Michigan.
He sold Aurora in 1959 for a reported $40
million to Ohio Oil-Marathon Oil.
Fisher then turned his attention to other
massive business deals while becoming
the patriarch of Detroit Jewry, a major
diaspora proponent of supporting the
young Jewish state and one of the Jewish
and secular world's
no small part to Max's
most revered phi-
said under sunny
butions to this
signs will be erected
said U.S. Rep. Joe
along US-24: North
Road) near 1-96; North
who had federal
US-24 (Dixie Highway)
near Telegraph; South
in the 2006 U.S.
US-24 (Dixie Highway)
near 1-75; and South
that allowed the
near Dixie Highway.
change from 1-96
Knollenberg said he
north to 1-75 at
hoped the memorial
Exit 93 west of
serves as a lasting
reminder to Detroiters
of the immeasurable
Blake watches as his father, Phillip
Mr. Fisher had
William Fisher, addresses the news
as a memorial to
The ceremony took
Fisher. The Fisher
place five days before
family is funding the signage project.
Yom HaAtzmaut, Israeli Independence
"It is fitting to be gathered at the Jewish Day, on May 10 (5 Iyar).
Federation — it's an important part I
"It's fitting to be gathered so near to
know of Max's life, and has grown through Israel's 60th anniversary:' Knollenberg
said. "Presidents of both Israel and the
United States relied heavily on Max's
advice and counsel."
Fisher's son, Phillip William Fisher of
Bloomfield Hills, spoke on behalf of the
Fisher family to thank Knollenberg for
"I've often said that a man doesn't really
die unless memory of him dies," Phillip
Fisher said. "You today have given us his
memory in perpetuity. Thank you so
"From Detroit to the State of Israel, I
know his values are in tune with yours,
Joe, and your 30-year friendship with him
was immeasurable Fisher added. "We
all together want to thank you for your
thoughtfulness in his honor."
The Max M. Fisher Federation Building,
a gift of the Fisher family, opened in 1992.
The Max — the Max M. Fisher Music
Center — opened in Detroit in 2003;
Fisher contributed $10 million of the $60
Nancy Grosfeld, Federation president,
called it an honor to speak about Max
Highway on page A28
May 8 • 2008