Los Angeles: Muhammad Ali’s daughter Laila Ali paid tribute to the boxing legend during the BET Awards held at the Microsoft Theater here.
She was accompanied by actor Jamie Foxx, who starred in the 2001 biopic about the icon’s life, “Ali,” as Ali’s cornerman Drew Bundini Brown, reported US magazine.
“My father lived his life with conviction and purpose. But to me and my eight sisters and brothers he was just Dad. As his youngest daughter, I can tell you that he was also a loving, gentle and principled man. He believed in evolving in his beliefs and his ideas.
“My father always said, ‘The man who views the world at 50 the same way as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.’ As my dad grew older he evolved in his mind, his heart and his spirit but one thing that never changed was his love and gratitude for all people,” Laila said.
After getting a standing ovation, she stood in front of a photo of her father holding her as a child and spoke about the evolution of her father as human being.
“These past few weeks my father’s generosity and love has been matched by a worldwide outpouring of love and reverence for him and our entire family. If he was here today, he would humbly ask you to pray not just for our family, but for all of mankind,” she said.
The boxing legend was 74 when he died on Friday, June 3, at a hospital in Phoenix.
Celebrities and family alike quickly took to social media to honor Ali, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 1984 just three years after his retirement from the ring.