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How Ali will be remembered

Cup of Love
In a 1972 interview with David Frost, Muhammad Ali was asked how he would like to be remembered. This is what he said:

He took a few cups of love.
He took one tablespoon of patience,
One teaspoon of generosity,
One pint of kindness.
He took one quart of laughter,
One pinch of concern.
And then, he mixed willingness with happiness.
He added lots of faith,
And he stirred it up well.
Then he spread it over the span of a lifetime,
And he served it to each and every deserving person he met.

 Read: The Champ in All of Us

Kentuckians talk Ali
Well-known Kentuckians explain what Ali means to them and how he was, as one describes, “a symbol for the principles he stood for.”

  • Frank X Walker Professor at the University of Kentucky and former Kentucky poet laureate: “He may have been the first living poet that I recognized as such,” he says. “I’m extra proud that I come from the same soil and space that created him. He’s significant to every young person hungry for heroes that look like them. He’s still an influence on how much space I take up in the world and what I do professionally.”
  • Gerald Smith Professor of history professor at the University of Kentucky, where he teaches a course on Race and Sports: “Ali was another important symbol of the black freedom struggle … For black athletes, he set the bar. Their chosen degree of activism will forever be measured by Ali’s courage and commitment to social justice.”
  • John Rosenberg Prestonsburg Civil Rights attorney who received the Muhammad Ali Kentucky Humanitarian Award in September 2016: “He was very courageous in standing up for his principles and he gave up a great deal (for them) … Even in his last years, he was a symbol for the principles he stood for. We need to put these principles into practice in this day.”
  • Haleh Karimi Executive director of Interfaith Paths to Peace, a Louisville-based group that honored Muhammad Ali as its peacemaker for 2016: “Everyone looked at him as a champion of peace … We were blessed to have him. He depicted what faith is all about.”
  • Loren Weber Berea College student from Gravel Switch, Kentucky, who was a member of the Muhammad Ali Center Council of Students when she was in high school: “I realize how much I follow his core principles (confidence, conviction, dedication, giving, respect, and spirituality) and the effort I put into them, even unknowingly … I really see his legacy in how he’s impacting through people he inspired for something greater.”

Ali birthday-related events
The Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville will host and facilitate activities January 14–17 in conjunction with what would have been Ali’s 75th birthday on January 17. Visit for more information and details about all programs and observances.

  • The Ali Tribute, a temporary exhibit, showcases unique art pieces in the Center’s collection or on loan for this exhibition. On display will be a variety of art pieces in mediums from oils and acrylic to cut-and-dyed concrete paver, all creative pieces inspired by The Greatest.
  • Films about Muhammad Ali will be presented; please check the schedule at
  • The Center celebrates and observes International Mentoring Day January 17, encouraging people locally and globally to discuss on social media the roles mentors play in people’s lives and the differences they make.
  • In honor of Ali’s quote, “Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth,” the Center’s staff and board will participate in a service project of 75 donated hours to raise awareness of what would have been the Champ’s 75th birthday.
  • Extending Muhammad Ali’s legacy beyond January 17, people in Kentucky and around the world are invited to be part of the “Ali in All of Us” initiative by being of service to others. Participants can donate time to a person, group, or cause that needs them, and their time and effort.
  • In recognition of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, it has become tradition for the Muhammad Ali Center to welcome the community to a continual, all-day showing of King’s famous I Have A Dream speech, playing every hour on the hour in the auditorium. Film screening is free and open to the public; regular ticket prices apply for exhibit admission.

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