Former three-time heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali is set to be honored by his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky.
On what would have been Ali’s 77th birthday, the late legend is to have Louisville Airport named after him.
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer discussed the move this week as a way of keeping Ali’s name on everybody’s lips.
“Muhammad Ali belonged to the world. But he only had one hometown, and fortunately, that is our great city of Louisville,” Fischer said in a statement.
“Muhammad became one of the most well-known people to ever walk the Earth and has left a legacy of humanitarianism and athleticism that has inspired billions of people.
“It is important that we, as a city, further champion The Champ’s legacy. And the airport renaming is a wonderful next step.”
According to Dan Mann, executive director of the Louisville Regional Airport Authority, the re-naming is almost certain to happen once Muhammad Ali’s Estate legacy handlers finalize the proposal.
“I think we are 99 percent there with that agreement, so that would really be the second step which we think we can execute in the next week or two,” explained Mann.
Ali’s widow, Lonnie was beaming with pride at the gesture.
“I am happy that visitors from far and wide who travel to Louisville will have another touch point to Muhammad.
“They will be reminded of his open and inclusive nature, which is reflective of our city.
“Muhammad was a global citizen, but he never forgot the city that gave him his start. It is a fitting testament to his legacy,” she added.
Ali died at the age of 74 in June 2016 after years of suffering with Parkinson’s disease.
A well-documented career saw Ali become the only boxer to regain the top division crown twice, but it was his engaging personality that captured the attention of the world.
Several honors have been bestowed on Ali over the years. Although this latest by Louisville is up there as one of ‘The Greatest’.