On Friday, June 3rd, 2016, beloved iconic three-time world heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali passed away in Arizona, at the age of 74. The American boxing great’s death came less than one week after his childhood home in Louisville, KY, opened to the public as an interactive museum.
The Grand Avenue pink house was home to the Clay family from the ‘40s to the ‘60s, and the neighborhood residents remember the child Cassius fondly. He would punch the tree in the front yard, convince his brother to let him shadowbox with his hands, and babysat local children for the price of a few bologna sandwiches.
The transformation of the home into an interactive museum cost $300,000, and the house next door was also extensively remodeled, serving now as a gift shop and ticket counter for those seeking admission to the boxing great’s childhood residence. Tickets cost just $8 for adults and $5 for children, making the museum accessible to all.
Rather than focus on Ali’s boxing career (already covered in depth by the Muhammad Ali Center on Sixth Street in the downtown strip that serves as the museum district of Louisville), the renovated 2 bed, 1 bath home in Louisville’s west side focuses on his formative years.
Muhammad’s younger brother, Rahman, was an integral part of the museum renovation, consulting on the project and stating that the only thing the completed museum lacked with “Mom and Dad”. The fighter himself never got a chance to visit his childhood home after the museum opening.
Ali’s other famous residence in New Jersey (the Cherry Hill house) is currently on the market; marked down from $2 million to $700,000, real estate agents claim it is hard to move due to its “splendor”.
The boxing great was taken to a Scottsdale facility from his last home in Paradise Valley, just outside Phoenix, Arizona, where he spent his declining years; he passed away from septic shock, according to reports.
Ali’s body was returned to Louisville on Sunday, and the champ, who suffered from Parkinson’s, will be buried at a private ceremony this Friday in Cave Hill Cemetery after a processional through the streets of his hometown as thousands gather to pay homage to the “Louisville Lip”. For the public, a memorial service will be held at the KFC Yum! Center on Friday afternoon at 2:00.
Feature image courtesy of cnd0.vox. Childhood home image courtesy of gannett-cdn.com.