It’s been 33 years since Muhammad Ali last stepped into the ring to do combat ending his career in a Nassau, Bahamas ring. He suffered his fifth loss ending with a 56-5 (37) record losing 3 of his last 4 fights. Today, on January 17th the former world heavyweight champion turns 72.
In speaking with Cus D’Amato at his home in the Catskills in the early 80’s told me he always would take a look at a young boxer if he was a “Capricorn”.
Besides Ali there’s heavyweight champions Floyd Patterson (4th), George Foreman (10th) and Joe Frazier (12th), all Capricorns.
Frazier’s daughter Jacqui held an event in Philadelphia Monday in honor of her father’s birthday. When she fought Laila Ali in 2001 I thought she won but it was Ali’s daughter who got the majority decision and went onto a successful career winning some 4 titles as did Jacqui. By the way, Laila is a Capricorn (Dec 30th).
Ali now married to his 4th wife has 9 children, 7 daughters and 2 son’s (1 adopted with current wife Lonnie). This writer met the 2nd wife Belinda at their then home in Cherry Hill, NJ, and 3rd wife Veronica at the Deer Lake Camp, in PA.
Ali considered by many to be one of the most recognizable boxers and persons in modern times. Ali’s good friend Elvis Presley was possibly another. Rumor’s are Elvis spent some of his last days at Ali’s Deer Lake Camp. It was difficult being around Ali without laughing when he started talking. He was “one of a kind”!
In November of 2005 Ali received the Presidential Medal of Freedom by then President George W. Bush during ceremonies at the White House.