Maxwell Finestone passed away August 15th, 2011 a few weeks after celebrating his 89th birthday with family and friends. A longtime resident of Accord, NY, Max is fondly remembered for his devotion to family, his intellect, warmth, sense of humor and longtime commitment to political and social causes.
Max was born on July 28th, 1922 in Boston, the son of Anna (Saunders) and Samuel Finestone, and spent much of his childhood in Ithaca, New York. He attended Northeastern University and Ithaca College before volunteering for the Merchant Marine during World War II. After the war he completed his undergraduate education with a degree in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University.
In 1953 he met and married his wife of 58 years, Annette Chait. They ran Chaits Hotel in Accord for more than twenty-five years. Hundreds of former guests and staff have profound memories of their time at Chaits, a resort for "delightful, talented, and creative guests", known for its diversity and eclectic style.
After selling the hotel in 1978, rather than "retire", Max continued his dedication to social and political causes on both the local and national levels. When asked why, he answered "to make the world a better place for my children and my children's children". Max chaired the Democratic Committee and the Town of Rochester Environmental Conservation Commission, and also volunteered with Meals on Wheels and the Accord Town Pantry. 1980, he served as an election observer in Nicaragua. Actively participating in a number of progressive Presidential campaigns, from Henry Wallace to Ralph Nader, Max liked to joke that he was proud to have been part of a series of "losing causes".
Max was a dedicated political activist, an actor in community theater and a world traveler. With his resonant voice and his impeccable timing, he could tell a joke like no other and will always be remembered for his unmatched sense of humor.
He is survived and forever loved by his wife Annette, daughters Laura and Lisa, son-in-law David Skillicorn, grandchildren Eva Chait Skillicorn and Michael Skillicorn, extended family the Stones and the Goldsmiths, and countless dear friends.
A celebration of Max's life will be held at the family home at 150 Mill Hook Rd. in Accord NY, on September 24th at 3pm. All are welcome. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Max's honor to the Rosenberg Fund for Children or Planned Parenthood.