Imam Zaid Shakir officiated both the janazah and public memorial service in Louisville, Kentucky for Muhammad Ali, the most well-known American Muslim of the twentieth century. In this blog, he reflected on the experience.
I was honored to attend the waning hours of Muhammad Ali’s life along with his immediate family. Taking a brief break from the stream of Qur’anic recitation, invocations, and devotional songs we were dedicating to Ali, one of the Champ’s daughters asked how would I describe her father? After momentarily reflecting on her query, I responded, “This may sound oxymoronic, but I would describe him as a humble mountain.” All present agreed that the description was apt.