*Please note: This article has been edited. It was first published on June 4, 2016.
The world’s most celebrated boxing superstar and former three-time world heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali died today in 2016 at the age of 74.
Ali, who declared himself the “world’s greatest”, died while undergoing treatment at Honor Health Scottsdale Osborn Medical Center in Scottsdale, Arizona, where he was admitted on Thursday with a respiratory problem, according to Bob Gunnell.
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. The Ali family would like to thank everyone for their thoughts, prayers, and support and asks for privacy at this time,” Bob said in a statement in 2016.
The boxer was laid to rest in Louisville, Kentucky, his hometown.
Millions of people across the world have been paying tribute to the boxing legend including his daughter, Hana Ali, who wrote this on her Twitter page:
Our father was a "Humble Mountain!" And now he has gone home to God. God bless you daddy. YOU ARE THE LOVE OF MY LIFE!
— Hana Ali (@Hanayali) June 4, 2016
For more than three decades, the boxing legend has been battling a condition identified as Parkinson’s disease, which cut short his boxing career in the early 80s.
Although he often made public appearances during his retirement, Muhammad Ali was in and out of hospital most of the time. In 2014, he was hospitalized with pneumonia and again last year with a urinary tract infection.
His Parkinson’s condition is believed to have been as a result of the numerous blows he took during his career in boxing.
Ali the Boxing Champion and Activist
Born in January 1942, Muhammad Ali began training at the age of 12 and proceeded to win the World Heavyweight Championship at the age of 22. Originally known as Cassius Clay, Ali changed his name in 1964 after joining the Nation of Islam.
Throughout his boxing career, Ali won a total of 56 fights and lost only 5. An interesting thing to note is that of the total 56 wins, 37 of them were knock-outs.
However, in 1967, the legendary boxer found himself on the wrong side of the law after he refused to be conscripted into the US military, which was involved in the Vietnam War. He was then arrested and found guilty of draft evasion.
After the ruling, Ali was stripped of his heavyweight title and did not participate in any boxing competition for close to four years. His conviction was later overturned in 1971 by the Supreme Court of the United States.
Muhammad Ali vehemently opposed the Vietnam War, which did not go down well with the government of the day.
Up to now, Ali is the only three-time lineal world heavyweight champion.