Singer, Shirley (Mrs. Paul)|
Whenever a difficult job needed to be done, the call went to Shirley Singer. Her passionate determination insured success to many civic, social, and charity events. Shirley's service to the community earned her many honors including 1973 Phoenix Woman of the Year. "No one ever turned her down
They wouldn't dare," said her friend Bill Shover. "Kindly, I would say, she sought donations and volunteers with the tenacity of a Gila Monster." Shirley Singer died November 16 at age 97. She was the wife of Prominent Physician Dr. Paul L. Singer, also a civic leader and past chairman of The Arizona Board of Regents. Dr. Singer died in 1976. In 1973, Phoenix Major Margaret Hance appointed Shirley to a 3-year term on the City's Bicentennial commission to honor the 200 year anniversary of the founding of The United States of America. The city offered services, but no funding with commission member, the late Phoenix banker Jim Simmons, they raised the funds and volunteers to stage more than 30 activities in the Phoenix area and brought national attention. United States Senator John Warner, National Bicentennial Chairman, praised Mrs. Singer, "Shirley and Phoenix held more celebrations for the Bicentennial than Boston, Philadelphia, or any other place." He went on, "And Phoenix wasn't even established until more than 100 years after the Revolution". The scope and variety of events included ethnic food festivals, entertainment concerts, music shows, and patriotic celebrations. She even had the National Bicentennial logo painted on the roof of the Arizona Veteran Memorial Coliseum to welcome airline passengers to Phoenix. To conclude the Phoenix Bicentennial Calendar on December 7, 1976, the 35th anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Shirley, with the Governor and Mrs. Raul Castro, as co-chairs, brought together thousands to witness the unveiling of the actual anchor of the USS Arizona Battleship sunk on that day of infamy. That war memorial stands at the entrance of the Arizona State Capital grounds. Today, memorials of the wars involving Arizona are nearby. In attendance at the anchor ceremony the Secretary of the Navy told Shirley "Your ceremonial event for the men who died on the Arizona was its finest tribute." Born Shirley Evelyn Ellis in Chicago, she was a raised in Hillsdale, Michigan and was a graduate of the University of Michigan. She met her husband Paul in Chicago prior to his service in World War II. They moved to Phoenix in 1945. They had two daughters Jean and Barbara now living in Phoenix. Three grandchildren also survive. Among her many Phoenix activities were; City of Phoenix Christmas Tree Lighting, was a committee member of COMPAS (Combined Metropolitan Phoenix Arts), Goodwill Industries, American Red Cross, Phoenix Little Theater, Valley Forward, and many others. Mrs. Singer also was the editor of "Roundup", the official publication of the Maricopa Medical Society. A service of remembrance will be held Sunday, November 29, at 12:30 P.M. At the Gathering Place, The Terraces, 7550 N. 16th St, Phoenix, Arizona. 85020. Donations in memory of Mrs. Singer may be sent to
, 1510 E. Flower St., Phoenix, AZ. 85014-5656. Arrangements entrusted to Whitney & Murphy Funeral Home.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Nov. 26, 2015