Jun 8, 2016|
Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)
This is a special presentation from ABC news. The death of Mohammed Ali. Remembering the greatest thing. Yeah yeah. Apple Apple's popular fighter available will be. Pete talks a great deal would read through these to overpower her constant grinding has been. Fights great he's got speed at. Inside the volume increased to ensure. It'll go through no. And it's wrong and I was like Paul begala and you know yes the crowd did not green when they've laid down that money. Bet they would see eight total eclipse of the sun the man to beat me you haven't been able in the end I'm always confident I would hope all over. And I. I. Former world great. For me and Siemens headquarters. Here is correspondent characters. He was called the people's champion a citizen of the world who spoke his mind and change the way people challenged authority. Mohammed Ali three time heavyweight champion Vietnam opponents civil rights activist humanitarian. Died Friday. He was 74 and had suffered Parkinson's disease for more than three decades. He became ill on Monday and was hospitalized that night in Arizona. His family seemed to expect that he would recover but by Friday morning a family spokesman said it became clear death was near. And Mohamed Ali died at 9:10 PM mountain time of natural causes. Tributes came instantly and from all walks of life. Vice President Biden said in the ring and in life Mohammed Ali fought for something greater than any title or claim to fame. Madonna call him king hero humans he shook up the world she said and George Foreman said a part of me slipped away. Ali's body will be moved from Arizona to Kentucky his funeral will be public. According to a plane he himself arranged years ago. The interfaith service. At an arena in Louisville will be preceded by a procession through town and include eulogies from former President Clinton Billy Crystal and Bryant Gumbel. We're told the themes of the service will match what Ollie preached. And they now form the backbone of his eponymous center in his hometown of Louisville ABC's Brian Barr was there Ryan. Air and as they stand here outside the Muhammad Ali center of the memorial to the champ continues to grow people are bringing flowers signs and balloons photos. Even boxing gloves leading feminist Darche sculpture planting outside the building. Among those paying their respects deem all drone who grew up in Cincinnati but now lives in Louisville and I grew up in day. But my father sat me down in Washington because greatness after watching that movie. New game in his life. Far more bigger than boxing news volleys Jeff also brought out Rachel brand to the Ali Sadr. I came shivering flowers just as senators banks. From global. Soon. You can rest of the world it was and I kind of for us you know he's an hour. He's our favorite side. Jerry who is visiting from Raleigh, North Carolina stopped by the memorial before going into the Mohammed Ali center the greatest just like what he stood. And I'd just. You know his boxing skills. But I like to humanitarian side of the Ali center built here in Louisville in 2005. Focuses on how these entire life the bases in the museum is Dolly six core principles confidence conviction dedication. Giving respect. And spirituality. And air and I briefly spoke with a Louisville public works employee busily typing away on her phone. She says they're preparing for large crowds to continue to come out to the Mohammed Ali center for several days. The crowds are sure to come that's ABC's trying to borrow in Louisville where Mohammed Al least funeral will be. He remained a fighter to the end it was boxing that made Mohammed Ali alleged it was his personality that made him larger than life. Here's ABC's Robin Roberts yeah. Outside. Mohammed Ali once a lightning rod both in and out of the boxing ring known for his grace and his power and his vote. I'm a I'm. It can't possibly be seen. He was born Cassius Clay in Louisville, Kentucky in 1942. You learn defined as a boy after his bicycle stolen and soon climb the ranks of Amateur Boxing but eighteen. He was the star of the US Olympic team. Light on this and unlike anything boxing world ever seen he took a moment Goldman. But the victory was bittersweet returning home to segregate itself where he was still treated like second class citizen. All these said he threw his gold medal into the Ohio River in disgust. Four years later the young boxer was up against reigning champs and used it in his first title. Define 71 on. Every time. It's upsets it's a lot of clay. That's not my fourth quarter we are on the right. Ali loves the spotlight but privately he was going through his own transformation. At the height of the civil rights movement and under the guidance of Malcolm X Ali join a nation of Islam and rejected what he called his slate name. I would like Biden to call my name him. Honda quality. Kansas claim and now we know. Since there was a new controversy this one landing him in court the year was 1960 cent. And the US was deep into the Vietnam. I only got his draft notice he refused to serve arguing the war violated his Muslim. No I will not go 101000 miles. From here to help yeah. And peel me. Another poor people's simpler to continue. The domination of white slave masters. Although the darker. Ali was convicted of draft evasion stripped of his title and banned from the sport I don't know. It's that yeah. It took almost three years for only to win his appeal at the Supreme Court and get back into the race. And he returned with a vengeance. Taking on these seemingly invincible George Foreman in the rumble in the jungle. Ollie won the hearts of the African crowd. And the biggest match of his three. Okay then I'll look let. It's. And with his razor sharp wet outside the ring all leave met his match in ABC sportscaster Howard Cosell. You shouldn't even though Eminem and a few blind them paneling and have a lot more. There verbal sparring born out of mutual respect and affection turn them into an irresistible comedy team on the wide world of sports. I'm not sure that there's anybody left really play in the fight you. That may come about someday thank you for coming experiencing it. I Ali's triumphs made for some of boxing's greatest fights. And made Ali one of the most popular figures of this typo it was the golden age of heavyweight boxing. And Ali was king. But years of punishment in the rain took its tone can tell. More messed up Molly retired for good in 1981. Three years later at the age of 42 and he was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. This time he would have someone else in his corner. In 1986. He married line and the first man during a trip to his family home in 1963. Little money. Didn't even know who he was. Together they have faced the toughest fight and I'm Molly Line. And when Ali grew physically weaker over the years he could still inspire. Lighting the Olympic flame. Raising millions for charity and speaking out for peace and solidarity with all Muslims. In the late September left. The United States honors Mohammed Ali in 2005. President Bush reported on the presidential medal of freedom. The highest US civilian honor for a man. Who will for ever be remembered for that boast of a young fight. I am the greatest and in so. News Mohammed Ali lived up to his school. ABC's Robin Roberts. And coming out how Mohammed Ali gave so many so much to write about these ABC news special. The death of Mohammed Ali and remembering the greatest and continuing Zach. Goodness. First to its. Most from across the two of everything. Asks. He's been right there. Shots are on the line. 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You were listening to winning ABC news special the death of Mohammed Ali remembering the greatest. Here's correspond to our futures. After battling Parkinson's disease for more than three decades Mohammed Ali died Friday at age 74. The kids from Louisville, Kentucky became sportsman of the century during a remarkable life chronicled by The New Yorker editor David Remnick. In king of the world Davids with us now David you decided to write a. Not someone about me so much had already been written how come. Well I wrote a book about Mohammed Ali because he was most electrifying athlete of mind. Lifetime and I think of the twentieth century at the same time he's a formative figure. In the sixties in the anti war movement and in the black liberation movement and it's very unusual for an athlete to place the chip. Complicated. And ferocious role in American culture. You met him when he was already secret parkinson's but what was it like to ask come into contact with him. The first time. I walked into the room and he knew I was writing about race. He opened a very slowly briefcase and took a picture of himself Malcolm X. And it was a way of apologizing and he made it clear that he was he. Had repudiated now connect he threw Malcolm X over the side of the ship. In favor of Elijah Mohammed had been nation of Islam because collage from Obama knew he was being attacked by Malcolm X. So this close relationship which lasted for awhile. Now what brought him in the nation this month. Collapsed. And he wanted to make it right. You've said no other athlete has done what he has done on the global stage I take this. Mohamed Ali was a revolutionary in two days as an athlete he was a revolutionary because he was heavyweight fighter who married power to velocity. Speed of foot with the power bat anyway I have never been seen before it had only been seen with athletes like Sugar Ray Robinson. And he was known anyway. And in the cultural sphere he was a revolutionary in terms of race for changing his name by joining the nation of Islam. By standing up for things that a lot of people were not yet standing up for. And joining the radical part of the civil rights movement and at the same time refusing to go to war in Vietnam. That this was a revolutionary act particularly for an athlete and particularly for an athlete that vibrancy. To a lot of people that hated Mohammed Ali. You know we think of Mohammed Ali now is is great Teddy bear kind of a man who in the last twenty years really couldn't speak very well and he with a torch and the Atlanta Olympics and everybody loved him. That wasn't the case when he was champion of the world or a lot of people that hated him resented him thought he was a big mouth. Too big for his britches. And all the other euphemisms that you can come up with a with a racist interpretation moment Ali. He was a revolutionary figure in his prime. You touched on this of course but but more directly ask what did Mohamed lead do for civil rights in America. Mean in some ways Mohammed Ali was a popular I serve the part of the politics that he became a part of it was not a political thinker he wasn't an original. When it came to politics he's not. He was never Martin Luther King or Malcolm X they Wear them. What he was somebody in the political sense who woke up a lot of people who weren't used to thinking politically. And saying this war is wrong I will not go. I will not use a slave name I am going to use this name and Cassius Clay by the ways of bearing resonant name Kentucky. He woke a lot of people in his way. It's it's a big big mistake to mistake him for the head of the civil rights movement of the nation of Islam or that. We're James Baldwin is a big mistake but at the same time he reached people who might not have otherwise been reached. David Remnick the editor of The New Yorker and author of the Mohammed Ali biography king of the world. Craig mortally formerly of our sister network ESPN. Is here with us now I'm Craig you've been working on a documentary about Mohammed Ali's so you probably had some of the most current information about. The end of his life how had he been doing toward the end. Think the best way to do need to did to answer that question as to go back to when I first met him which was. March 31 1993. At LaGuardia Airport. For a documentary airs at that time. Feature I've proposed produced for ESP. You know the context and he was my hero. And I made. Tom I was biography of Mohammed came out earlier in 1990. It was the first real testament to what his wife was really lights in his post Parkinson years. And a lot of misconception about his health is well. His state of mind. And I saw 222. Right the nets. It's correct admits it. As a work in total reassert what Digital Life like two day so when I first met Mohammed he was still pretty horrible are getting around just fine. 100%. Mental capacity. On debt that is is. Intellect was diminished at all. And through the years as as the case with parkinson's. More and more of the motor skills started to go to wasn't. In immediate thing against that going through the spring of 93. A trench it. It started with me with him and his family and there's a trust they are that. I was doing good work and was gonna put Obama did a good light and tell the true story of it is like today which was traveling the globe as a goodwill ambassador in. Meeting people on street corners and putting children in the old ladies and signing autographs and just demolished early you know you'd you would otherwise no and just spreading goodwill in Indian peace of in these. Early 2000. I noticed some diminished motor skills little more trouble walking and balance but. Does still had the verbal skills against I could still converse with them a bit alms. And I would say the last. Eight to five years talking much less diseases vocal ability was diminished. And more recently confirmed. Relying upon wheelchairs or walkers to get around. Ball brought. To be very. To meet him for the first time he was in Boston for a throat surgery which they thought would help that is. Local capacity and at the time my son Derrick. Currency has three years ago so he was dying in my daughter was six. And it was like. Kid beating Santa Claus I mean the heat he took to my daughter would not let her go I mean literally picked erupted put in his lap. And didn't say a word but she sat there for twenty minutes half an hour to get to adopt cleverly done little with heard. He always like little kids and we always like little girls they had bombed cannot be ignored bodyguard myself do and yet they broke me assisting each other's face like he. You always did the fans but. REI. Was we each week that would info about 45 hours at a hotel suite in heated say a word in it'd have to. Our home I wish I'd told apology not in my life and it meant so much for him to meet Mike hit it and you know god smiles. We're gonna win again and you know eat it if he was totally alive in his mind that I think that's what people need to know he was never punch drunk he was never. He'd never really losses mental capacity and in you just the president and apart consulting and body. Alms but is much Egypt brought joy to people lies in in a non verbal late at the end of the we have some great footage of him. From what documentary playing with schoolchildren and it. Shadow boxing with kids and he led a fourth grade girl pretend not about the other cheek he importantly just like hit me here. Did she faded a punch that was certainly felt out of his back didn't. Did the class counted allowed a vivid. Beautiful moments like that there was another moment aren't on who didn't we're really June 16 street and Lenox up in Harlem. And we're outside of the well he's Islamic. So there's a mosque and there was Malcolm X original mosque and all of those Muslim bookshop in and observed a barbershop and Bobbitt went there for a thought it would be just a hair cut what he he he lacked an idiot not a total hours he told him getting his hair dyed. The black you know get some great except nobody read it and they would decay everything care. And it was legacy incendiary Murphy movie. Coming to America there argument could type should be Dolly and her mother sitting right there any was very verbal. All of taunting the mob like icing get beat. Ian so on and so forth so there's a moment when he is leaving the barbershop. People gathered around him and he's passing out. The Islamic camp which was his autograph on and so the signing twenty precise in these pamphlets and does what well. African American woman to screen right reached out where there is a high baba O'Reilly can have a hard to. He's a oh when leading part at least stop Rudy was doing any turned. And hard this woman and everybody in the audience. That's sweet and I thought at the moment and it's got a basically it's here's what I think about it that. This woman probably waited all her life. To see this guy up. And this was her moment in the sun it safely recorded on our video. And just didn't think that you brought joy to this woman is she had left to live as Obama and I'll lead as shall remembered the rest the pro life. Craig stay with us if you would it's critic mortally formerly of our sister network ESPN now working on a documentary about Mohammed Ali. War with Greg coming out this ABC news special. The death of Mohammed Ali remembering the greatest continues after the X. Who's reading the situation unfolding history department and out. 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After he beat Saudi listed in the 64 there was a trip but he went to Africa for the first time. And he had already changed his name in proclaimed that the Islamic religion he has his own. And all the heads of state in the African and Middle Eastern countries wanted to meet him people work something out from the bush from from the wilderness. Against writing the size of these dirt roads in reaching out to him. At the time I believe he was only 2223. Years old when he won the title. I imagine that. And then you know not sort of Egypt wants to meet you would to crumble wants to meet you it it must have been at an amazing. Vote. And his wife to realize that I have now a world figure because I adopted this world religion and people Cheney's. As something more than just an athlete and then when the draft came about in any rejected. Induction. Into the military. Value to keep a political figure so reluctant political figure winning tickets were itself. He wasn't looking to lead a movement yet I think always he wanted to help free black people of America I know that. For a fact that you will look at the leaderboard that. By his actions and being bowl. In standing up for what he thought was right. He wanted to help these people be free in America and you have to remember he grew up in segregated Louisville. And you know he was turned away from large town. Others or you know saw his mom as domestic maybe not being treated with the respect she deserves and things like that and there's this story broke. But he was a teenager. The famous Emmett Till murder. In Mississippi. Was over the past northern papers you know there's this young boy was brutalized and murdered and pitchers of his corpse were worth the paper and are these debt cash is police senior showed it to all the this chip is silence Rudy at the time now rock on now only about Mohamed and cast placed junior and he made the point of shelling this and they had a great effect on Mohamed. But taking an amateur were about the same page I think maybe Europe part but it made him realize that you know I'm at a but the second class citizen of Black America and segregated America and I think that always stuck with them. That he wanted to be free in his own country you want and his people to be free column and that's. The major reason like you would that would go to Vietnam like plate I'm looking to free those people providing free care. In America so. I can't do. As the years went along what a world figure he was. He could if you wanna do something Egyptian. Go Google images Mohammed Ali. And look at all the pictures of world leaders and celebrities said he opposes what it throughout the years from the from the early sixties but until. Most recently you know popes presidents premieres. You name it is it is all political leaders and celebrities of all colors creeds they are wanted to be with Mohammad Ali. I think for a time maybe even still today. But people see that basis the most famous he's the most famous man on the planet. And you know he's been out of the limelight in recent years because of his condition but. Well I think one of the great losses in our society is that he was silenced by this dreaded disease. Just a wonderful person. I was blessed that I was allowed it to was like you might hero as a kid I loved him as hundreds of pitchers have been tacked up on a war. Taken from the rafters and my parents basement and while it was still there are on. I welcome the fighters are charismatic figure he was funny I mean oh my god this is funny and you know the banter with cosell through the years in a bomb you know you could look at it and not that that's all welcome and admire needs is just one of the kind has never been. Unlike him since and never will be one like him again. Television producer Craig mortality formally of our sister network ESPN now working on a documentary about the life of Mohammed Ali. There was so much to him that could fit in it and it documentary and we've heard about his life and his work certainly his boxing he has been remembered by a family spokesman as a kind. Benevolent individual and one of the things that he works for in his life. Was tolerance and understanding. Among the world's religions ABC Scott Goldberg spoke with a another biographer. Aron Tom Hauser wrote the book called Mohammed Ali his life and times and I asked him. Why did he wanted to write that book. I was approached by Mohamed and has twice in October of nineteen PDA. They asked that I was sentenced to write it well we all hope to become the definitive Bob and oh lead biography. And it was it's an extraordinary opportunity. Outside of John Kennedy who was my boyhood hero. I don't think there's anyone on the platitudes of sat me down next it would shake me up as much as one commonality. I grew up without. I was in college when he refused induction into the united states army during the height of the war in Vietnam. I remember. The impact he's had the civil rights movement. I was a sports fan and he was probably the greatest fighter of all time certainly the most beautiful fighting which means that for assembled. So really how the it was very deep inside the has sequence or several generations of Americans. And it was a tremendous opportunity. To get to know him to spend time with them and also. Put down on paper what this meant and meant to the world to. You know apparently today. Is famous for having stood up for his principles. But too few people really understand what those principles were and apparently enabled me to write a page of history. You know I'm thinking about how we would see Mohammed Ali through a modern minds someone who was opposed to military conflict. He changed his name from Cassius Clay to Mohammed Ali. Could an athlete do that today. You can't take Mohammed the house at this time. He is inextricably. Whacko to do and to the 1960s. Just like Joseph Louis is inseparable from the late 1930s. And 1940s. And Jackie Robinson from the slightly later Europe and The Beatles and Elvis Presley and other icons from there it's. Probably was the heart and soul of the 1960s. Since he took The Beatles today they came map out her Elvis Presley. That they be another pop singer another band it was is where they were in that over that time was one of the things that they've been so extraordinary. The same thing for Natalie don't forget our league table long. At a time when many people of color plot was spattered with the white. In black. Lee and I can't tell you how many people have said disk two including people like Reggie Jackson great baseball player. Reggie said today you know when I was growing up I was ashamed of my color I was ashamed of my hair and lead may be. Proud. To be black. He clearly sent a thrill through an entire generation not only to be changed the way people of color felt about themselves. He changed the way white people to people of color and I have to say that one of these. We use of that. The American people were able to elect an African American president. With a strange sounding name Barack Obama. In two and today was that they could become familiar with the come to love my heart that I probably. Wasn't a bad fighter. Yeah I believe was a great fighter as we know. Great athletes. Have enormous impact on culture. Whether going back it's people like Babe Ruth or Jackie Robinson and Arnold Palmer. Michael Jordan there. Stefan curry and LeBron James today people respond that athletic success. People responded to. But the separated themselves from the pack that that today when people look at they. And the way he stood as a beacon of hope for. Oppressed people all over the world the way he stood up to armies all over the world but he refused induction. It's almost an afterthought for some to say and oh yes it was a great great fighter which she was. Thomas Hauser biographer author of Mohammed Ali his life and times errant. ABC Scott Goldberg and coming out Mohammed Ali Al. Side the ring is activism and what he meant to the world peace ABC news special. The death of Mohammed Ali and remembering the greatest continues after this. More Americans turn taking BC's Good Morning America event. Place else in the morning so I'm. 1 morning show that helps you know what you want in the morning. And we know because it's important to you it's in. Robin Roberts do what they did. 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You were listening to winning BC news special the death of Mohammed Ali remembering. The greatest. CNET news correspondent American tourist. Boxing legend and humanitarian Mohammed Ali died Friday from complications related to his decades long battle with Parkinson's disease. His funeral is going to be in his hometown of Louisville on Friday at six KFC yum center and arena where the public can buy tickets and attend the funeral. Because Mohamed Ali was a man of the world he traveled all over on charity missions for the United Nations. And he said he never stopped believing in the generosity of people. Here's ABC's Byron Pitts most of us know what. The public Mohammed Ali because of his gifts in their ringing in front of a microphone it's old school come smoke it and I go the beach okay. But on the very short list of those who actually knew the private and public Ali. Is a man equally blessed with gifts admired worldwide. Famed actor singer and human rights activist Harry Belafonte. The president admitted is. In the airport. And removal it was the early sixties. Since they can't. Have taught us. This is you fight. I don't know is when you have got them coming after. And then just for that moment. He came to MySpace and just. Despite his celebrity Ali was still a colored man in 1960s America who dare to align himself at both ends of the civil rights movement. A fan of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. I shared faith with Malcolm X many whites and blacks viewed him with suspicion. I had a number of actors of color. I would look at him and wondered. What was his game rolls his. He proves skilled in the one role we knew best being himself. In Odessa he had in those times was at best unfamiliar. At worst dangerous. Welcome home rally. This young upstart. And has followed Chris about it. Mixed with so much mr. It's so was masterful. This summer's prices. And sent Judy is incredible saw. It's like in many ways that you're journey with the. Mohammed Ali is like America's journey with Ollie. Initial. Fascination and attraction. Deep curiosity. And concern. Middle away and then great affection later. Not only great affection. And all that you just described yes there was some curiosity and fascination. All that. But I then began to look at him. And a struggle and a movement. Was very differently and I saw him. Critically important. To smashing. Traditions. Customs. Most of us had some. Adopted a code of existence. Always. Put upon us indeed show. And so I. Always do respect. That he contends. Don't be aggressive. Be a could you grow so perhaps she showed it was okay for a black man to be able to be outspoken. Who along okay. Throws it to be anything but that. Mohammad Ali that he would raise Obama it says. And the beauty of it was that it's really him it wasn't a sawed to a lot of things about it put on. Precocious. Kind of game play. Deep down inside but you saw. Him on our teams really who he was. I loved. It. SE Asia the world would come to love in all the knew him well conceived Mohammad Ali was not a perfect man. Just perfect forest on. ABC's Byron Pitts and coming out and Mohammed I'll leave in his own words and we've legendary broadcaster Howard Cosell. This ABC news special. The death of Mohammed Ali and remembering the greatest continues after this. First the two. Smoothest and cross the key to everything. Asks. He's been right there. You challenge her on the line. Reports to. Having someone's back. There are being there when you're needed. It's about standing up he does he believe in the military got your six means I've got your back. Today it's more than a turn to when you bring veterans and civilians together to show of respect for all of reserved. And a way to ensure that they return home to be seen as assets and leaders of countries since I've gotten sick guy stinks I've got six I've got a sense from congress six. Find out how you can help music on your sixth start work today. 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An expert we just have to terror he can make a difference inspired others decent and get involved through volunteer since I had abc.com slash B inspired. Day one out of every four American kids Hispanic. That means many of the future doctors will carry us engineers will build cities are scientists and entrepreneurs of our country. Can be Europeans and we all know how hard it is for medicine. This is why it shouldn't you are not alone. Every day more people support you. Many so much they spend as much of the final child care plan and paying for your kids. And then they start thinking. There's just no point in trying. At risk of looking for care. Find your fans see and change school. Girls. You're listening to winning ABC news special the death of Mohammed Ali remembering. The greatest. CNET news correspondent Aaron can tourist. Mohammed Ali's gifts in a boxing ring may have been matched only by his gifts of gas. His verbal sparring with the legendary broadcaster Howard co celibate BC became special. Don't let life get kids. I'm amazed you famous enough. I know you follow me get your name in the papers. He's feeling bikes in low available until. She still fights. Is being extremely truck killer. Well I was talking to me is that good I'm that good luck hope it's none and I if his act. Just look at my record and see if they have the other fights then acts. Have they've been accidents Oprah will make you think I'm acting whom would you like to fight. Any way Aaron what I would like to fight living things the best number one man I think he's moved from. I'm not sure that there's anybody left to play in the U. That may come about some day. Thank you for coming this. And say. I love tape codes sales didn't take him out. Coincide Eaton knocked. Who scenes and who. You know write them mommy you're not them and you weren't ten years go right right. Well let's go why are you can anyone imagine you'll get a quick heads the battle mountain and I'm on an album will be back clarity I highlight element knock out sequences and just dumb moment. There's no question about it and I Chris came the national attention. In all of the interviews I did reveal one wide world of sports. I think I'm always. Athlete black on white golf a sport that's why I think I'll have matching wits with you. You would it really well I'm not a bad. I don't believe that I knew I don't reveal another rule this country why things I don't. To YouTube to how little you like I do only television. I congratulate him. It's. Doing its. I'll play. Mohammed Ali sparring with Howard Cosell. So much of his life was memorable and his memory lives on at the Mohammed Ali center in Louisville. Its mission to share the legacy and ideals of Mohammed Ali to promote respect. Hope and understanding. I'm Aaron Patterson you've been a city to a special presentation to death of Mohammed Ali remembering the greatest. From ABC news.