Muhammad Ali dies at the age of 74

Boxing legend Muhammad Ali has died at the age of 74.

Ali was hospitalized in the Phoenix area, battling respiratory problems serious enough to draw family members to his bedside.  The AP reports several of Ali’s daughters flew to Phoenix late Thursday and early Friday to be with their father.

Ali was born in Louisville, Kentucky in 1942 and became an Olympic gold medalist in 1960. Biography.com says he devoted a lot of his time to philanthropy and earned the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005.

He has been hospitalized several times in recent years, most recently in early 2015 when he was treated for a severe urinary tract infection initially diagnosed as pneumonia.

His last formal public appearance before that was in October when he appeared at the Sports Illustrated Tribute to Muhammad Ali at The Muhammad Ali Center in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, along with former opponents George Foreman and Larry Holmes.

An iconic figure who at one point was perhaps the most recognized person in the world, Ali has lived quietly in the Phoenix area with his fourth wife, Lonnie, whom he married in 1986.

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