Louisville says goodbye to "The Champ" at memorial service - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Louisville says goodbye to "The Champ" at memorial service

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Flower petals lining the drive way into Cave Hill Cemetery (Photo by Jacob Davis, WDRB News) Flower petals lining the drive way into Cave Hill Cemetery (Photo by Jacob Davis, WDRB News)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Muhammad Ali was buried on Friday with a sendoff from his hometown. Following a private ceremony at Cave Hill Cemetery for close family and friends, a memorial service was held at the KFC Yum! Center. 

The memorial service, originally scheduled for 2 p.m., began about an hour late, around 3 p.m., after the 19-mile funeral procession around Louisville, which made stops at various landmarks around the city that had some significance to Ali. 

The procession began at A.D. Porter & Sons Funeral Home on Bardstown Road, made a stop on I-64 in front of the Muhammad Ali Center for a moment of silence, and proceeded into downtown where it paused at Ali's childhood home.

The procession ended at Ali's final resting place at Cave Hill Cemetery.

After the procession, thousands gathered at the Yum! Center to pay their respects.

A Quaranic recitation was delivered by Hamzah Abdul Malik and Ayah Kutmah gave an English translation. 

Imam Zaid Shakir introduced the speakers, which included

  • Dr. Kevin Cosby
  • Senator Orrin Hatch
  • Rev. Msgr. Henry Kriegel
  • Dr. Timothy Gianotti
  • Rabbi Michael Lerner
  • Chief Sidney Hill and Chief Oren Lyons
  • Rabbi Joe Rapport
  • Venerable Utsumi and Sister Denise

Ambassador Shabazz gave a reading, and a statement was given from President Barack Obama, read by Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett. 

Eulogies were presented by the following speakers:

  • Lonnie Ali, Ali's wife
  • Maryum Ali, Ali's daughter
  • Rasheda Ali-Walsh, Ali's daughter
  • Alessandra "Ali" DiNicola
  • Natasha Mundkur
  • John Ramsey
  • Billy Crystal
  • Bryant Gumbel
  • President Bill Clinton

The ceremony concluded with an Islamic prayer, poem and closing of service by Imam Zaid Shakir.

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