A couple of days ago we brought you the touching wake-keep photos of boxing legend Muhammad Ali as thousands gathered to pay their last respects.
Over the weekend, he was buried in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky and it was quite a moving event with several fans coming out to show their support for his family and celebrate his legacy.
There was a funeral procession to pass through his Parkland neighborhood on June 10, 2016 in Louisville, Kentucky. The procession which had at least 100,000 people lined up the streets to say their final goodbye, preceded a memorial service, giving the public an opportunity to honor the three-time World heavyweight Boxing Champion, and one-time Light-heavyweight Olympic Gold medalist.
The ceremony was presided over by a Muslim Imam, with a list of speakers that included a Catholic priest, an American Indian chief, and two Rabbis, with eulogies from former US President, Bill Clinton, Billy Crystal, Ali’s wife Lonnie, and his daughters Maryum Ali and Rasheda Ali-Walsh.
Eulogising him, Clinton said, “Ali is a truly free man of faith”. “I think he decided very young to write his own life story. I think he decided that he would not be ever disempowered. Not his race, not his place, not the expectations of others whether positive or negative would strip from him the power to write his own story,” he said.
Reading a tribute from President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle, Senior presidential aide Valerie Jarrett, said “Muhammad Ali was America. Muhammad Ali will always be America.”
Lonnie, Ali’s wife said: “If Muhammad did not like the rules, he would rewrite them. His religion, his name, his beliefs, were his to fashion, no matter what the cost.”
“He dared to love black people at a time when black people had a problem loving themselves,” said Kevin Cosby, Senior Pastor, St Stephen’s Baptist Church
“Having Muhammad Ali in my life somehow sustained my dad’s breath for me just a little while longer – 51 years longer until now,” said Attallah Shabazz, daughter of slain Nation of Islam leader Malcolm X.
Comedian Billy Crystal said: “Thirty-five years after he stopped fighting, (Ali was) still the champion of the world. He was a tremendous bolt of lightning created by Mother Nature. Muhammad Ali struck us in the middle of America’s darkest night and his intense light shone on America and we were able to see clearly.”
Muhammad Ali died on June 3 of complications from Parkinson’s disease.
See Photos below:
Photo Credit: Getty Images/John Moore