The Greatest Photos of The Greatest Himself, Muhammad Ali
Last week Cassius Clay, aka Muhammad Ali, passed away at 74 years old. At just the age of 12, Ali started on his path to boxing success when wanted to fight whoever stole his new bike. He was a lanky, 75-pound boy from Louisville, Kentucky with the eye of the tiger. After springing onto the scene in 1960 professionally, he gained 56 wins in his 21-year career.
Outside of the ring, Ali was a man with an open heart. From changing his name to separate himself from his ancestors’ slave owners to accepting being stripped of his titles after refusing to be drafted for war, he had genuine soul that always stood up for what he believed in. Ali was a family man, a Black rights activist and devoted Muslim who proclaimed himself to be the “Greatest of All Time.” Photographer Thomas Hoepker, whose incredibly intimate photos of Ali were exhibited at the Milk Gallery in 2013, said that “the more time I spent with him, the more interesting the man was.”
In order to honor the man that told me, “don’t count the days, make the days count,” check out the beautiful photos above, taken throughout his life and career.
Images via Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and courtesy of the Milk Gallery.
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