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[Blow-by-blow] Boxing Great, Muhammad Ali's Final Journey

[Blow-by-blow] Boxing Great, Muhammad Ali's Final Journey


Thank you for joining us for #MuhammadAliFuneral

Bill Clinton speaks and closes the Public Memorial

Billy Crystal delivering his tribute to Muhammad Ali
“Ali was the most perfect athlete you ever saw, those were his words” – Billy Crystal

Muhammad Ali FACT
He was given a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005 by the then President George Walker Bush.

Muhammad Ali QUOTE
“I always bring out the best in men I fight, but Joe Frazier, I’ll tell the world right now, brings out the best in me. I’m gonna tell ya, that’s one helluva man, and God bless him.“
A victorious Ali after the ‘Thrilla in Manila’

Maryam Ali, daughter of Muhammad Ali reads a poem

Lonnie Ali, wife of Muhammad Ali delivers tribute
Touches on his life in general, lauding his ideals and his principles, thanking all present and people the world over for the out poor of love, with special mention of social media tributes.

The FULL program lineup for the event, better late than never
At least it helps us know that President Bill Clinton is the last man on the bill.

Atallah Shabdazz, daughter of Malcolm X delivers emotional tribute, gets standing ovation

Rabbi Michael Lerner, tough talks at Public Memorial, suggests Hillary Clinton will be next US president

Ali, emissary of Islam, international diplomat- Utah Senator

First speaker, Reverend Cosby

President Bill Clinton introduced to loud cheers of “Ali! Ali! Ali! The mayor of Kentucky has also been introduced

Quran recitation kick starts the event!!! #MuhammadAlifuneral Quranic recitation by a Tennessee Imam, according to host, going by Muhammad Ali’s expert wishes

Private burial has ended. The public memorial at the KFC Yum Center has just started, guests are filing into the packed hall. Former US President Bill Clinton is expected to deliver a tribute along with other dignitaries.

Flowers, Flowers, Flowers amid chants of “Ali! Ali! Ali!”

Muhammad Ali FACT
In 1984, Ali was diagnosed with Parkinson’s syndrome that apparently was linked to his career. The disease left him slow, shaky and unable to speak much above a whisper but close associates said he never lost his sense of humor or zeal for his faith.

Muhammad Ali QUOTE
“I done wrestled with an alligator, I done tussled with a whale; handcuffed lightning, thrown thunder in jail; only last week, I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalised a brick; I’m so mean I make medicine sick.“
Before the ‘Rumble in the Jungle’

Obama misses Ali’s funeral as he attends daughter Malia’s graduation ceremony

The White House had earlier released a message signed by the president in memory and honour of Muhammad Ali, arguably the greatest American athlete in a long while.

Ali’s procession ends, hearse enters cemetery for private funeral session to begin. A public memorial at the KFC Yum Center follows after, stay with us. His parents were also buried in the same cemetery.

Erdogan pulls out of Ali final ceremony – Middle East Eye reports

Muhammad Ali, the African connection?
Click HERE to read Africanews piece on the boxing legend.

Draped with cloth from Holy City of Makkah on request of Erdogan Reports say Turkish president Erdogan asked for cloth used to drape the coffin bearing his body to be brought from Makkah, the Islamic holy city in Saudi Arabia. Ali himself has a link with the city of Makkah, having undertaken the Islamic pilgrimage to Hajj after he became Muslim in 1963, joining the the Nation of Islam.

Muhammad Ali FACT
Ali was named the top sportsman of the 20th century by Sports Illustrated magazine, he would go on to meet world leaders such as Queen Elizabeth, Nelson Mandela, Pope John Paul II, Fidel Castro and Saddam Hussein.

Muhammad Ali QUOTE
“I never thought of losing, but now that it’s happened, the only thing is to do it right. That’s my obligation to all the people who believe in me. We all have to take defeats in life.“
After losing to Ken Norton in 1973

Thursday (June 09) Islamic Prayer held for Ali
On Thursday, an estimated 14,000 attended Ali’s Islamic prayer service. In attendance was Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is also expected to be at the interdenominational tribute event that follows the ongoing procession.

A funeral planned by Ali himself, procession ongoing
The over 15 limousine cortege is still going through the streets of Louisville, with the mortal remains of the town’s most famous athlete. His funeral was planned out by himself for over 10 years

“The plans are specified by Muhammad Ali, that’s the bottom line. This is a 10-year plan that a small group of advisers had worked on. And these are Muhammad’s wishes. What you’re seeing are Muhammad’s wishes and he had a hand in all the planning.” – family spokesperson Bob Gunnell.

Muhammad Ali “THE MUSLIM
Muhammad Ali FACT
In 1963, Ali converted to Islam even though he was born a baptist, he has been described as the greatest American Muslim. His names are two of the most popular “Muhammad” – name of the final prophet and “Ali” – the fourth and final caliph of Islam.

Muhammad Ali QUOTE
“What’s really hurting me – the name Islam is involved, and Muslim is involved and causing trouble and starting hate and violence. Islam is not a killer religion, Islam means peace. I couldn’t just sit home and watch people label Muslims as the reason for this problem.“
In the aftermath of the 2001 World Trade Center attacks.

Muhammad Ali FACT
Ali’s career record was 56 victories, 37 of them by way of knockout, and five losses.

Official biographer, Thomas Hauser
Ali was deeply spiritual and he was a generously nice man, it was difficult to imagine a rude ALi, he probably signed autographs than anyone else who lived. It’s a time of mourning and also a time of celebration. He should be remembered as someone who championed peace and love.

“It takes seconds to scribble my name but that person will live the rest of their lives adoring my gesture,” Ali would say

Muhammad Ali QUOTE
To make America the greatest is my goal, so I beat the Russian and I beat the Pole. And for the USA won the medal of gold. The Greeks said you’re better than the Cassius of old.
After winning Olympic light-heavyweight gold medal at the 1960 Games in Rome.

Rev. Jesse Jackson:
Civil Rights Activist says “Ali is arguably the best boxer of all time. Ali outlived the criticism of his anti-war position. (Muhammad Ali) embarrasses segregation.”

Black hearse being driven through the streets of Louisville. People lined across the street chanting Ali! Ali, Ali, Ali Some throwing flowers as the hearse passes.

Among his pall bearers, entertainer Will Smith, Mike Tyson and other acquaintances

14:20 GMT
His casket draped with Islamic calligraphy cloth is taken from the funeral home into a hearse. The funeral has officially started.


A tall list of people have gathered to bid the world’s greatest pugilist farewell. Muhammad Ali’s final funeral rites has attracted world leaders and political heavyweights.

The ceremony in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky is in two parts:

a. A funeral procession through Louisville before a private burial.
b. A public memorial at the KFC Yum Center.

The list of celebrities are certainly not lightweight plus the hundreds of thousands of boxing fans who either watched him display his artistry at ringside or on their television screens, all get a bite of the ‘action.’

People from all walks of life, who admired Ali as a man will on Friday (June 10) in his Kentucky hometown, bid him a final farewell. The tough talking, hard hitting and much loved global figure died a week ago at age 74.

9 a.m. (1300 GMT): Funeral procession in Louisville starts at his body will be sent to Cave Hill National Cemetery for a private burial.

2 p.m. (1800 GMT): Mourners will go to KFC Yum Center for a memorial service featuring eulogies by former U.S. President Bill Clinton and comedian Billy Crystal, beginning at

Global leaders expected include: Jordan’s King Abdullah and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan (the latter was present at the Muslim prayer on Thursday)

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer told a news conference; “Now as the world continues to flow into our city, it’s time for us to send him off tomorrow with great class and dignity and respect.”

“The world will literally be watching tomorrow as Muhammad’s processional and memorial service are broadcast to a global audience,” he added.

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