Muhammad Ali Funeral – Fit for King!

 

Today the world paid tribute to “The Greatest” people champion  of all time and boy what a tribute it was!

The Champ made sure that he would pay his beloved city of Louisville the same love and respect that they showed him over the years.  He made his final journal through his hometown passing the little pink house he grew up in and now a museum that bears his name.

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Thousands were lined up to view the procession of  a long line of limousines paying their respects, offering flowers and  chanting “Ali! Ali”!  brown, black yellow and white, it was truly a site to behold and one that will be remembered just as vivid as Princess Diana. For Muhammad Ali was surely America’s King of Greatness!

“He stood up for himself and for us, even when it wasn’t popular,” said Ashia Powell, waiting at a railing for the hearse to pass by on an interstate highway below.

A private graveside service was held in the afternoon, and was to be followed later in the day by a grand memorial service attended by more than 15,000 people, including former President Bill Clinton.

The casket was loaded into a hearse outside a funeral home as a group of pallbearers that included former boxers Mike Tyson and Lennox Lewis and actor Will Smith filed out, along with Ali’s nine children, his wife, two of his ex-wives and other family members.

Ali chose the cemetery as his final resting place a decade ago. Its 130,000 graves represent a who’s who of Kentucky, including Kentucky Fried Chicken founder Colonel Harland Sanders. Family spokesman Bob Gunnell said he will have a simple headstone, inscribed only “Ali,” in keeping with Islamic tradition.

A traditional Muslim funeral service was held Thursday, with an estimated 6,000 admirers arriving from all over the world.

Ali himself decided years ago that his funeral would be open to ordinary fans, not just VIPs. As a result, thousands of free tickets were made available and were snatched up within an hour.

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Louisville is accustomed to being in the limelight each May during the Kentucky Derby. But the send-off for the three-time heavyweight champion and global ambassador for international understanding represented one of the city’s most historic events.

“We’ve all been dreading the passing of the champ, but at the same time we knew ultimately it would come,” Mayor Greg Fischer said. “It was selfish for us to think that we could hold on to him forever. Our job now, as a city, is to send him off with the class and dignity and respect that he deserves.”

President Barack Obama was unable to make the trip because of his daughter Malia’s high school graduation. Valerie Jarrett, a senior White House adviser, planned to read a letter from Obama at the service.

“Everybody feels a sense of loss with Ali’s passing,” said Mustafa Abdush-Shakur, who traveled from Connecticut. “But there’s no need to be sad for him. We’re all going to make that trip.”

Muhammad Ali obituary has not been released to the public at this time, however the eoncomist.com created this beautiful infographic in his honor.  RIP: ” Ali, Ali!” our Champion of People.

muhammad ali obituary

info gragphic courtesy: Economist.com

 

Source: AP

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