Boxing Legend and Humanitarian Muhhammad Ali dies at 74
The management team at Face Activities honors the passing of an American original, sports icon and humanitarian, Muhammad Ali, who died from a respiratory illness, age 74. We extend our condolences to his family, friends, and many fans around the world. One of the most popular athletes and effervescent personalities, Ali was an Olympic Boxer, and Heavy Weight Champion of the world, considered one of the greatest pugilists ever to live.
Eloquent and vivacious, Ali was known for a passionate, confident and poetic speaking style that his contemporaries failed to match, and helped garner Ali great favor with the public. One of his best remembered quotes is “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee,” which he used to promote his elegant and powerful fighting style.
His exploits in the ring were legendary, but his considerable prowess as a fighter was more than matched by his humanitarian outlook. He was a strong supporter of civil rights, and his great achievements and high media profile did much to advance the cause. Staunchly anti-war, Ali faced criticism and arrest for refusing to serve in the United States Military during Vietnam, on moral and religious grounds, winning him the admiration of the nation’s increasingly anti-war youth.
Controversial and outspoken, Ali’s quick whit and no holds barred style of engagement with the press stirred up the boiling cauldron of racial and political tensions during the 1960s. For this he was both loved and hated, idolized and mocked, during his eventful youth. But over time, as the nation grew, and the civil rights movement gained wider acceptance, along with concerns over the nation’s military entanglements, he gradually won over the American People, and developed a huge following of devoted fans and admirers.
Born Cassius Marcellus Clay, the young boxer converted to Islam and changed his name, an unprecedented move at the time, which many members of the Press wrestled with for years. Throughout his long career, and longer retirement, during which he struggled with Parkinson’s disease, Ali demonstrated conviction, courage, compassion, and great personality in good times and bad.
He will be missed.