2016 Jun 4
Legendary three-time heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali, who bragged that he was “the greatest” and then backed up the claim in the ring, died Friday in Phoenix, Arizona. He was 74. ABC News reported his death.
A family spokesman, Bob Gunnell, issued a statement saying that Ali died late Friday. “After a 32-year battle with Parkinson’s disease, Muhammad Ali has passed away at the age of 74. The three-time World Heavyweight Champion boxer died this evening,” Gunnell said.
The boxing great’s funeral will be held in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky.
Ali, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s syndrome in 1984, the result of taking too many punches during his years in the ring, particularly at the end of his career, was hospitalized on June 2 in Phoenix for a respiratory ailment.
Even as his health declined, Ali did not shy from politics or controversy, releasing a statement in December criticizing Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States. “We as Muslims have to stand up to those who use Islam to advance their own personal agenda,” he said.