Thousands of people are paying respects Friday to iconic boxer Muhammad Ali, who died a week ago.
Among those delivering eulogies this afternoon are former President Bill Clinton and longtime friend, Comedian Billy Crystal.
In the days since his passing, the memorial at the Muhammad Ali Center has been growing with flowers and pictures, but there really has not been a sad feeling in Louisville. Instead, it has been a celebration as the people of Ali’s hometown pay respects to a man who is not only the definition of a world icon, but a local legend.
Ali deid at the age of 74.
Former fighters looked up to him, saying he will always be the greatest, and the president says Ali inspired him.
“One of the great blessings of my life was the fact that when I ran for office, became a U.S. Senator and then, President, I was able to get to know the Champ,” President Barack Obama said.
Friday, the world will say goodbye to the three-time heavyweight boxing champion.
“Our city’s outpouring of love this week for Muhammad has been just what “The Greatest” would have wanted when he came home for the last time,” said Mayor Greg Fischer, Louisville, Kentucky.
Ali helped plan his memorial, wanting it to be as open and inclusive as possible.
“Just as my father’s life was about including everyone, he wants everyone to be there for his passing as well,” his daughter, Laila Ali, said.
After the service at the Yum Center, Ali’s body will be paraded throughout the city, past the home that he grew up in, and then taken to a the site of his private burial.