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1942-2016, He Fought Men, Racism and War Itself. He Fought Well, Changing The World. (Now, about Sexism…)

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This will not be news to almost anyone in the world who might be reading my blog for any reason.  I had a post ready, but I cannot imagine posting anything today without acknowledging the passing of Muhammad Ali last night.    

It also seems appropriate for current posts I’m working on, discussing WAR as promoting the largest, and most profitable companies, really, on the planet, and helping run it through their scope, size and close involvement with governments (plural) which are manufacturing pharmaceuticals in that maybe his toughest fight was against the disease.

Because of my recent contemplations (Memorial Day) on war, also, I’m starting with Muhammad Ali’s quote regarding the Viet Nam War, for which he paid a steep professional price, in his prime and when our nation had “the Draft,”

Muhammad Ali was deeply spiritual but never sought to to impose his religious beliefs on other people. Photograph: Getty Images. [From 6/4/2016 article in the Guardian.UK on his death, “Muhammad Ali: The Man Behind the Icon” by Biographer Thomas Hauser] [Quotes, below]

Found as a response tweeted on a British (Telegraph.uk) article, today:

“Full Ali quote on the Viet Nam War.” http://www.telegraph.co.uk/ news/ 2016/ 06/04/muhammad-ali-dead-at-74-the-world-pays-tribute-to-boxing-legend/, Tweeted by Ben Norton.

 

Found at Wikipedia on Muhammad Ali, regarding this:

Ali refused to be inducted into the armed forces, stating that he had “no quarrel with them Vietcong.”[52] “My conscience won’t let me go shoot my brother, or some darker people, or some poor hungry people in the mud for big powerful America. And shoot them for what? They never called me nigger, they never lynched me, they didn’t put no dogs on me, they didn’t rob me of my nationality, rape or kill my mother and father…. How can I shoot them poor people? Just take me to jail.”[53]He was systematically denied a boxing license in every state and stripped of his passport. As a result, he did not fight from March 1967 to October 1970—from ages 25 to almost 29—as his case worked its way through the appeals process. In 1971, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned his conviction in a unanimous 8–0 ruling(Thurgood Marshall recused himself, as he had been the U.S. Solicitor General at the time of Ali’s conviction).

During this time of inactivity, as opposition to the Vietnam War began to grow and Ali’s stance gained sympathy, he spoke at colleges across the nation, criticizing the Vietnam War and advocating African American pride and racial justice.

And, same source (Wiki) more on the process, which is also a commentary on IQ tests and the military.  Notice his protest of this war on the basis of religion was because it was a war by Christians or unbelievers; if Allah or the Messenger had declared it, that would be a different matter. Still.  Talk about courage….

Vietnam War and resistance to the draft

Ali registered for the draft on his eighteenth birthday and was listed as 1-A in 1962.[115] In 1964, he was reclassified as 1-Y (fit for service only in times of national emergency) after two mental tests found his IQ was 78[116] ***(16th percentile), well below the armed force’s 30th-percentile threshold.[115] (He was quoted as saying, “I said I was the greatest, not the smartest!”)[115][116] By early 1966, the army lowered its standards to permit soldiers above the 15th percentile and Ali was again classified as 1-A.[21][115][116] This classification meant he was now eligible for the draft and induction into the United States Army during a time when the U.S. was involved in the Vietnam War.

[Some annoying, excess links removed from above paragraph.]

When notified of this status, Ali declared that he would refuse to serve in the Army and publicly considered himself a conscientious objector.[21] Ali stated: “War is against the teachings of the Holy Qur’an. I’m not trying to dodge the draft. We are not supposed to take part in no wars unless declared by Allah or The Messenger. We don’t take part in Christian wars or wars of any unbelievers.”

Appearing for his scheduled induction into the U.S. Armed Forces on April 28, 1967 in Houston, Ali refused three times to step forward at the call of his name. An officer warned him he was committing a felony punishable by five years in prison and a fine of $10,000. Once more, Ali refused to budge when his name was called. As a result, he was arrested. On the same day the New York State Athletic Commission suspended his boxing license and stripped him of his title. Other boxing commissions followed suit. Ali would not be able to obtain a license to box in any state for over three years.[117]

***footnote to an ESPN/Eric Neeler’s “Muhammad Ali from A to Z” also might be interesting.

From The Guardian.com, 6/4/2016.

Muhammad Ali: the man behind the icon

The late boxer’s biographer recalls getting to know a deeply spiritual and intelligent man with endless tales, no regrets and a passion for life that never diminished, even as his condition did

by 

…..I met Ali for the first time in March 1967, I was a student at Columbia University and the host of a radio show called Personalities In Sports that aired weekly on the student-run radio station. Muhammad was preparing to fight Zora Folley at Madison Square Garden and I had been granted an interview with him. For an 18-year-old sports fan, it was heady stuff.

At that point in Ali’s career, he was virtually unbeatable. Ali-Folley would be his seventh championship defence in less than a year and his final bout before a three-and-a-half-year exile from boxing. The war in Vietnam was at its peak. The National Selective Service Presidential Appeal Board had voted unanimously to maintain Muhammad’s eligibility for the military draft, and he’d been ordered to report for induction in April. The assumption was that he would refuse induction. Ali himself had hinted as much when he said, “Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go 10,000 miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on brown people in Vietnam, while so-called Negro people in Louisville are treated like dogs?”

At Madison Square Garden, I watched Ali go through a series of exercises. Then I stood at the edge of the ring as he sparred with Jimmy Ellis. When that was done, he went into his dressing room and I followed. I wasn’t from the New York Times or any other news organisation of note, but that didn’t seem to matter. Ali told me to turn on my tape recorder. We talked mostly about Nation of Islam doctrine, with some questions about the military draft, Folley, and boxing in general thrown in. Ten minutes after we began, Ali announced, “That’s all I’m gonna do,” and the interview was over.


And, the second article I found today, good biographical detail and summary:

Muhammad Ali, Boxing Legend, Dead at 74

Legendary athlete and breaker of boundaries remained social activist until his death  By  June 4, 2016

On October 30th, 1974, referee Zack Clayton, right, steps in after challenger Muhammad Ali looks on after knocking down defending heavyweight champion George Foreman in the eighth round of their championship bout in Kinshasa, Zaire. AP

Well-written article.   I don’t know that my quoting could add anything to it, or to the memories. , however, he took the title at age 22 from a reigning heavyweight Sonny Liston, and shortly after, converted to Islam:

Clay had become the youngest fighter to take the title from a reigning heavyweight champ – a record that would stand until it was broken in 1986 by 20-year-old Mike Tyson.

Shortly after winning the title, Clay became a member of the Nation of Islam, and the sect’s leader, Elijah Muhammad, personally renamed him Muhammad Ali. The boxer had been attending Nation of Islam meetings since 1961, and Malcolm X had served as his spiritual advisor, though Ali kept this connection secret until just before the Liston match. Just weeks after Ali’s name change, Malcolm split with the Nation, and the boxer ended their friendship, a move he later counted among his life’s biggest regrets.

Later, it changed.  Regarding “Rumble in the Jungle” (Zaire) and “Thrilla in Manilla,”:

…As these overseas fights demonstrated, Ali had become an international celebrity and figure of black pride. When Ali starred in The Greatest, the 1977 film adaptation of his autobiography, he became one of the few public figures who could boast of portraying himself in his own biopic.

The final years of Ali’s career were far from glorious. In 1976, the judges’ announcement that he’d won a Yankee Stadium bout with Ken Norton was met with boos from the crowd, and in response Ali announced his retirement to focus on his faith. (He’d recently left the Nation of Islam to practice Sunni Islam; 30 years later, he would become a Sufi Muslim.)

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/sports/news/muhammad-ali-boxing-legend-dead-at-74-20160604#ixzz4AeP171FO

 

Briefly, that he had nine children and four different wives, with four of them attending him at the end.  A person could hardly ask for more than to have supportive family with them at that time.  Age 74 is also still “premature” and I hope at some point it’s realized that the answer to all major health issues is not always drugs, and the cause of many of them (not saying Parkinson’s) is.

 REUTERS ARTICLE:

Muhammad Ali remembered as boxer who transcended sports world

SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. 

1 of 32 images on ReutersMedia article. “Muhammad Ali poses with his boxing gloves. Action Images/Sporting Pictures”

A man has his photograph taken near a makeshift memorial to the late Muhammad Ali in New York, U.S., June 4, 2016. REUTERS/LUCAS JACKSON

Muhammad Ali cuddling his daughters Laila, (L)and Hana at a hotel in London, December 1978. Action Images/MSI [Sat. 6/4/2016 Reuters article, Image 3]

Muhammad Ali stands with his wife Yolanda as he is introduced before the welterweight fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Shane Mosley at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, May 2010. REUTERS/STEVE MARCUS


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



“MARRIAGES AND CHILDREN” Wiki, AND ARTICLES

 

From Wikipedia, FINALLY (as well as on the right margin) has a few words on his four marriages, near the bottom, under “Marriages and Children.”

Spouse(s) Yolanda Williams (m. 1986–2016),

Veronica Porsche Ali (m. 1977–1986),

Belinda Boyd (m. 1967–1977),

Sonji Roi (m. 1964–1966)

Children Laila Ali, Hana Ali, Asaad Amin, Khaliah Ali, Muhammad Ali Jr., Rasheda Ali, Jamillah Ali, Miya Ali, Maryum Ali

Typically this would go closer to the top, under “Personal life.” However that section for this famous professional boxer with a famous conversion to Islam right after his first (of three) titles, and equally famous refusal to serve in the Viet Nam War during a time of compulsory draft for young men, that section reads instead:

Ancestry, early life, and amateur career

This is the “Marriages and Children” Section, which I feel belongs in here, from Wikipedia:

Ali was married four times and had seven daughters and two sons. Ali met his first wife, cocktail waitress Sonji Roi, approximately one month before they married on August 14, 1964.[94] Roi’s objections to certain Muslim customs in regard to dress for women contributed to the breakup of their marriage. They divorced on January 10, 1966.

Another article below, quoting her, says she was threatened for not converting.

On August 17, 1967, Ali married Belinda Boyd. After the wedding, she, like Ali, converted to Islam. She changed her name to Khalilah Ali, though she was still called Belinda by old friends and family. They had four children: Maryum (born 1968), twins Jamillah and Rasheda (born 1970), and Muhammad Ali, Jr. (born 1972).[95] Maryum has a career as an author and rapper.[96]

Below, another article explains that the affair with Veronica, who was on the poster for the “Rumble in the Jungle” helped add glamour to that fight.  Either way, the affair predated the divorce by two years, looks like,. and he married her the same year (1977).

In 1975, Ali began an affair with Veronica Porsche, an actress and model. By the summer of 1977, his second marriage was over and he had married Porsche.[citation needed] At the time of their marriage, they had a baby girl, Hana, and Veronica was pregnant with their second child. Their second daughter, Laila Ali, was born in December 1977. By 1986, Ali and Porsche were divorced.[citation needed]

Laila became a boxer in 1999,[97] despite her father’s earlier comments against female boxing in 1978: “Women are not made to be hit in the breast, and face like that… the body’s not made to be punched right here [patting his chest]. Get hit in the breast… hard… and all that.”[98]

Again, looks like there was little time lost between one divorce and the next marriage.  By 1986, he’d been diagnosed with Parkinson’s for a few years.

On November 19, 1986, Ali married Yolanda (“Lonnie”) Williams. They had been friends since 1964 in Louisville. They have one son, Asaad Amin, whom they adopted when Amin was five months old.[95][99][100][101][102]

Ali was a resident of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, in the early 1970s.[103] He had two other daughters, Miya and Khaliah, from extramarital relationships.[95][104]

Ali most recently lived in Scottsdale, Arizona, with Lonnie.[105] In January 2007 it was reported that they had put their home in Berrien Springs, up for sale and had purchased a home in eastern Jefferson County, Kentucky, for $1,875,000.[106] Lonnie converted to Islam from Catholicism in her late twenties.[107]

Through Hana, Ali’s son-in-law is mixed martial artist Kevin Casey.[108]

Veronica Porsche, married the boxing champ at age 18. His prior wife had married at him age 17 (he was older), then had four children with him. Guess he liked them young….younger than himself.

(photo above from this article):

http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/boxing/muhammad-ali-women-who-loved-8111280

People.com in 1976.  I was looking for whether Veronica had converted or was already practicing Islam.

The Ali-Belinda Split Is Made Official—and Mysterious Veronica Turns Up Pregnant

There is another woman—some say she is another wife—in Ali’s life. She is the sleek, mysterious Veronica Porche, who doesn’t look so sleek anymore. “Friends have told me she is pregnant,” says Khalilah. “If she is his wife and is having his baby, then that’s Ali’s business.” Clearly Khalilah has put Ali behind her. “There isn’t any marriage,” she says. “It’s past me now.”

Khalilah, who has become a skilled photographer, lives with her four children in a four-bedroom apartment in Chicago. Ali occupies an apartment a mile away, and Veronica lives 10 minutes from him. Khalilah split with the champ when “his other relationship began affecting the family life.”

Ali has been escorting Veronica to the same Muslim mosque attended by Khalilah and the children. “People were talking and the kids were seeing this,” Khalilah says, “so I made a request to the Nation of Islam that Ali be prohibited from entering the mosque.” The petition was approved last month by Wallace Muhammad, leader of the sect.

At his 88-acre farm in Berrien Springs, Mich., where he is training for a fight this month against heavyweight challenger Jimmy Young, Ali indignantly parried questions about Veronica’s pregnancy. “As long as I fill all those seats in stadiums and I’m fighting, my fans are not interested in who I’m sleeping with,” he said. “Nothing bothers me. I live in controversy.”

In 2014 (40th Anniversary of “Rumble in the Jungle”) Veronica Porsche claims to have been married secretly in Zaire while legitimate wife Khaliah was staying in a hotel nearby.  Think this says a little bit about character? even though there was a later divorce and marriage of the teenager he’d impregnated.Ali – born 1942 was in his 30s in the 70s, and so marrying a woman about half his age, and even if not legal in the US, it would’ve been bigamy.

Alis ex-wife reveals details about their secret wedding In USA Today Oct. 20, 2014 by Josh Peter.

Upon the 40th anniversary of “The Rumble in the Jungle,”Muhammad Ali’s third wife, Veronica Porche, told USA TODAY Sports about their secret marriage ceremony she said was held a week before the big fight in Zaire — despite the fact Ali still was married to his second wife.

Porche said only she, Ali and the African man who married them attended the ceremony and that they told only Luis Sarria, who was Ali’s masseur and conditioner. She indicated she knew better than to tell others and expose Ali to possible legal consequences: “Going to jail for having two wives,’’ Porche said with a chuckle.

Khalilah Camacho-Ali, the boxer’s second wife, grew angry on Wednesday when told about what Porche described as a Muslim marriage ceremony — one that took place while she was staying at a nearby hotel.

“It wasn’t a real marriage, Islamicly or non-Islamicly,’’ Camacho-Ali said. “Whatever he concocted to connive her was a scam. That wasn’t legal.’’

Porche and Ali were legally married in 1977, soon after his divorce from Camacho-Ali was official. Porche and Ali divorced in 1986

[What’s sad to me, LGH, about this, is how women are so willing to do this to each other, even though logically speaking, they’re next; if a man did this to one, he could just as easily do it to another.]

“YOWZA!”, here’s Laila, Veronica’s Daughter who became a boxer, in 2002, expressing her feelings as an abandoned daughter.  It also reveals some things about the religion’s treatment of women, not just her famous father’s.
Admittedly, it’s from the National Enquirer. Look at the consequences to her of not having a father around when a relative molested her:

My Dad ALI Didn’t About Me

Boxer Laila Ali delivers a powerful punch to her famous father Muhammad Ali with a blockbuster new autobiography that describes the former heavyweight champ as an uncaring, self-centered dad.

Publishing sources told The ENQUIRER that in the book — “Reach! Finding Strength, Spirit, and Personal Power” — 24-year-old Laila reveals that her loveless relationship with her father was a root cause of troubles she experienced in later years.

“Laila’s dad was a hero to millions but not to her,” revealed a publishing source familiar with the contents of the book. “She suffered extreme loneliness as Muhammad Ali’s youngest daughter and she wanted to run away from home when she was only 4 years old. She grew up feeling angry and hostile. The only thing that straightened out her life was a run-in with the law. She finally learned responsibility from a group home.”

Today Laila is a successful pro boxer, a businesswoman and aspiring actress and model. But it’s clear from her book that she succeeded only by using survival skills learned during her difficult childhood as daughter of Muhammad Ali and his third wife Veronica Porche.

“Ali never discussed with his daughter what was going on in her life,” said the source. “He was too busy dealing with his own life. Laila Ali didn’t like much about her father — his Muslim religion, his big, slobbery kisses, his outgoing personality.

“He was so busy in public giving out autographs, photos and advice, he would walk out of a restaurant or a mosque and forget he had come with his kids. Then he’d eventually remember and return to gather them up.”

The child was so isolated that when she was sexually molested by a relative at age 5, and again at age 10, there was no one she could tell…. Family life for Ali’s lonely daughter was already almost nonexistent, when in the mid-1980s Laila’s mother rebelled against the subservient role of a Muslim wife and divorced Muhammad for infidelity. Her father’s faith was difficult for Laila as well.

Laila hated her father’s preaching, the prayers, the mosque, words she didn’t understand, a faith she didn’t believe in, and the women sitting behind the men,” the source said.

:

I looked for a little more on the wives and children.

I have not been following sports, or Muhammad Ali, and so am hardly up to speed on any of it.

The Daily Mall.UK, which I sometimes think is ” a bit of a rag” still also often has details about famous individuals and their family relationships.  This article points out that while it was a “knockout” career, after the services are over there is likely to be another rumble among the surviving wives.  It also brings up that his only SON is living in poverty in Chicago, and that the current wife (Lonnie) had Ali’s younger brother arrested for taking things from the family home, which was deeded to Ali.   It also points out the obvious — religiously devout or not to Islam, he was still a philanderer.  See the last phrase of the title of this post..

The next article also has many photos, and some videos of Ali and his other relatives.  I learned that he met and married his second wife, Belinda, while she was only 15 and working for a bakery at the Nation of Islam.

Ali’s women – and a very fractured family: How boxing legend’s train-wreck private life has left his legacy to his loved ones marred by jealousy, bitterness and division

By David Jones for the Daily Mail. 

  • Muhammad Ali, 74, died at a hospital in Arizona on Friday evening

  • Legendary boxer married four times and had a complicated family life 

  • The serial adulterer was closer to some of his nine children than others 

  • His fourth wife, Lonnie, stopped him from seeing his son Muhammad Jr 

  • She even had his brother arrested for taking furniture from Ali family home

  • Two remaining ex-wives are likely to battle Lonnie for her husband’s legacy

  • For the latest Muhammad Ali news and tributes visit www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/muhammad_ali

Death has surely come as a merciful release for Muhammad Ali, for it has ended an agonising 30-year struggle with Parkinson’s disease – the one opponent even The Greatest couldn’t beat.

Having spoken to many of his friends and family members, I know that, during his last years, each new day was a waking nightmare. He was trapped in a body so dysfunctional that he needed assistance just to stand up, and could only communicate by grunting.  [Video] Ali had become totally dependent on his fourth wife Yolanda – Lonnie – or more usually her sister, Marilyn Williams, who served as his live-in carer during his last years

The two women would shuttle Ali between his summer house in Louisville, Kentucky, and his winter retreat in the warmer climes of Scottsdale, Arizona, only breaking the routine to fly him to charitable functions and celebrity-studded occasions.

According to some close friends, he seemed to relish the adulation he received when making these poignant, silent appearances; others questioned the morality of wheeling him out to be gawped at like some waxwork exhibit.   

Yet …for all his towering achievements, his mood can hardly have been enhanced by the knowledge that he would leave a family riven by feuds. They run so deep that it is difficult to imagine how they might come together in the coming days, even for the few hours of his funeral. …

It seems that his own son Muhammad Ali Junior, is reduced to depending on a father-in-law, is on welfare, etc.

Married four times, he was a serial adulterer (fortunately for him, such matters weren’t reported openly in his day) and though he acknowledged nine children plus an adopted son, there are many others, all across America, who claim him as their father.

Some have emerged from his train-wreck private life in far better shape than others. Having taken up boxing against his express wishes, his daughter Laila, 37, has become a B-list celebrity.

Some of her sisters have traded on their father’s name to succeed in business. But contrast their fortunes with those of his only – known – natural son, Muhammad Ali Junior, now 43.  Two years ago, I was appalled to find him living, with his wife and two infant daughters, in one of Chicago’s most notorious ghettos among drug-dealers and gangsters

They are still there today, cramped into damp, sparsely furnished tenement flat provided rent-free by Junior’s father-in-law, and surviving on welfare hand-outs and food-stamps. His is a sorry story indeed.

One of the four children born to Ali’s abandoned second wife, Belinda Boyd, ‘Junior’ was woefully neglected by his absentee father as a child, and badly bullied by boys who wanted to prove they could beat up the legendary champion’s son.

Perhaps as a result, he is a pitifully lost and confused character who has spent his life alternately trying to live up to his illustrious name – and making a few dollars from it on the side – and to escape it.


[Getty image] Lonnie had Ali's brother Rahman arrested after he took possession of the Clay’s old family house and removed some of the furniture

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3624815/Ali-s-women-fractured-family-boxing-legend-s-train-wreck-private-life-left-legacy-loved-ones-marred-jealousy-bitterness-division.html#ixzz4Af3q0hEv

Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Among the genuine and sincere regrets for anyone who makes major contributions for GOOD to society, let’s still acknowledge that they have families and these families are not always well-treated.  Also, that they are often men — and whether Christian or Muslim, respect for women or the sanctity of marriage isn’t always a long suit.

If I’m somehow racist or sacrilegious for bringing this up, well, I also brought up on on the death of Senator Ted Kennedy (search this blog; it’s in a post!).  I am also a woman, and I do believe that the creation of a continuous underclass of women does nothing to help them get along with each other during or after divorce, or particularly protect each others’ best interests.

Another Article attempting to straighten out who’s who among the four, and with some information regarding each of them:

Muhammad Ali’s legacy as “The Greatest” boxer of all time will live on, but so will his crazy personal life. Ali was married four times, having at least nine children. Two children are “love-children,” according to The Telegraph. The fractured familial bonds will leave behind an equally complex legacy which could shatter the memory of “The Greatest boxer of all time.” Leading up to Ali’s death, family disputes erupted between his current widow (Yolanda “Lonnie” Williams), Rahman (Muhammad Ali’s younger brother) and estranged son Muhammad Ali Jr.

Ali’s cousin, Charlotte Waddell, claimed in an interview 2 years ago that Yolanda (current widow) “controls everything” that Muhammad Ali was doing. Waddell reveals the following to The Daily Mail.

Read more at http://www.inquisitr.com/3167170/muhammad-ali-4-wives-9-children-the-greatest-marriages/#xQIwTBArLrhRF8ju.99

The above article says that Sonji (first wife) said she was threatened for not converting to Islam and wasn’t willing to take on all of them and possibly end up dead.  We know from honor killings abroad AND in America this was not unlikely (for more, see Phyllis-Chesler.com; she has written for years on Islamic gender apartheid.  While I disagree with Dr. Chesler on some of her recent positions, on this she is an authority).

Sonji was divorced from Ali 16 months later in January 1966, blaming their break up on pressures to adopt the Muslim dress code and convert to Islam. His ex-wife claimed she was threatened for failing to conform. “I wasn’t going to take on all the Muslims…If I had, I probably would have ended up dead.”

Later, same article,. on Wife #3 adding glamor to one of his famous fights (and having two more children):

Muhammad Ali’s Third Wife: Veronica Porsche Bore Two Children

Veronica Porsche was a poster girl for Muhammad’s 1975 “Thrilla in Manila” fight against Joe Fraizer. Porsche added much glamour to the bloody fight, ending his second marriage to Belinda Boyd. Muhammad Ali’s third marriage, which was to Veronica Porsche, lasted from 1977 to 1986. Hana Yasmeen Ali and her sister Laila were the children from Ali’s third marriage who were reportedly at the heavy weight champion’s bedside during the time of his death. Laila Ali remained close to her father, pursuing her own career as a professional boxer. Muhammad would often appear at her fights, including the highly anticipated 2001 match between Laila and Joe Fraizer’s daughter, Jackie Lyde.

Ali’s Fourth And Current Wife: Widow Yolanda “Lonnie” Williams

Lonnie and son Asaad are now determined to “Carry On Legacy” of Muhammad Ali. Yolanda married Ali in 1986 after moving to California to be Ali’s full-time nurse three years after his diagnosis with Parkinson’s disease. Reportedly, she may have used her power of attorney over his affairs to estrange some family members
Read more at http://www.inquisitr.com/3167170/muhammad-ali-4-wives-9-children-the-greatest-marriages/#xQIwTBArLrhRF8ju.99

Here’s an article on the former Belinda Boyd (now Khalilah Camacho Ali) which says that was basically her running off at the mouth; she was around during the most trying part of his career:

(Dates to 2014 in “The Wrap”)

Muhammad Ali’s Ex Reveals What It Was Like to Be Married to the Champ TV | By  on January 21, 2014 @ 4:09 pm

Camacho Ali, whose decade-long marriage to Ali began in 1967, the same year he resisted the draft, talked about being the woman behind the champion at a Television Critics Association panel for PBS’s “Trials of Muhammad Ali.” The marriage ended when she divorced him, she said.

She joked that she helped him create his vocal persona: “You’ve seen him after I divorced him. He ain’t said nothing since,” she said.

Camacho Ali helped her husband through the most trying period of his professional life. Ali went to the Supreme Court to fight the U.S.’s efforts to imprison him for refusing to go to Vietnam.

I’m not sure why most of the “family” search results turn out to be from the UK, but they are.  This is from The Sun.

Ali’s fractured family life:How boxing great’s private life could lead to another rumble as his wives and children battle it out for legacy

Muhammad Ali was married four times and has seven daughters and two sons


Brother Rahman, 71, said Ali would divorce Lonnie if he realised what was going on — adding: “The worst thing to happen is not the illness, but his wife.”

Lonnie, 58, was Ali’s childhood neighbour. Along with her sister Marilyn she became his full-time carer and married him in 1986.

At the time, Ali — who had nine children from three marriages and two affairs — was said to be ­squandering his money on women, spongers and failed business ventures.

Lonnie restored the legend’s ­fortune to around £60million and pushed many people out of his life. Some family members accused her of taking control of “everything he does”.

Photos and next section (different color background) are from the sun article, although I have no quotation marks due to the layout:

WBC and WIBA super middleweight champion Laila Ali is kissed by her father (Co. Reuters)

Ali’s fractured family life: (Sun.UK)

THE final days of Muhammad Ali were marred by family feuding.

Both his only biological son and Ali’s brother claim they were frozen out of his life by the icon’s fourth wife Lonnie.
Muhammad Ali Junior, 43, says he was neglected by his father as a child and then thwarted in his attempts to build a relationship.
Laila, a little bit younger (with her three younger siblings including a brother, seated behind them):

Muhammad Ali is pictured with his second wife Belinda Boyd and their four children, twin daughters Reeshemah (left) and Jamillah, son Muhammad Jr and older daughter Laila (photo: Getty)

 

 


Junior, one of four children born to Ali’s abandoned second wife, was banished after Lonnie learned he had tried to sell a pair of his dad’s boxing gloves.

He lives in a drug-infested ghetto in Chicago with wife Shaakira and their two young daughters.

‘When it came to women my daddy was a whore’

And he said whenever he phoned to speak to his dying dad, he was told he was sleeping or busy. Just weeks ago, Junior said he had not seen Ali for two years. He added: “I saw him on his 72nd birthday, then on his 73rd birthday

Junior has blamed Ali’s womanising on his own father, Cassius Marcellus Clay Senior, saying: “When it came to women, my daddy and grandpa weren’t very nice people — they were whores.”

He claims to have had only one “heart-to-heart” with his dad — when he was 19 at Ali’s 50th birthday. He said: “He told me he was afraid what might happen to him in the afterlife because of some of the things he’d done. “I told him that whatever had gone on in the past, I still loved him, and his eyes filled with tears.”

Meanwhile Rahman sees Lonnie as a “gold-digger” who reduced him to speaking to Ali on the phone from his dingy two-bed flat in Louisville.


I’m sad to hear, as a middle aged woman and mother dealing, before my own elderly mother died, with “control-freak” behavior among my siblings (and without that mother being particularly famous, although our long-previously deceased father, while not famous, was well-known in his field), to the point that I did not feel safe to attend my own mother’s funeral.  I am long beyond discovering, but not yet done battling, this obsession with isolating vulnerable people (in our case, not just our mother, while she still lived, but also my own children, even after they were (without my awareness) abandoned by their own father after having already been separated from me, while still minors!), and when it comes to financial matters, as we speak, I may be forced to litigate to get ahold of a paper trail even on what is, while I live, resources of which I am the beneficiary and on which I have become long-term depending while fighting OTHER family wars AFTER the one to protect my work life, or (repeatedly) jumpstart new ones, was defeated.  I don’t say “lost” because I am no loser.

I will not be posting the documentation, but do have it, of the “before, during and after” of that fiasco, and am well aware of what direction I was going in, and would have continued in, without said fiasco — which involved as I have said before on this blog, my own family line after I “Dared to Divorce a Domestic Violence Batterer.”  IN fact, I hadn’t (at the time “war” was declared, which was after symptoms of its having been initiated were already noticed) even initiated a divorce, simply protected myself and my children, and made ONE household move a short distance away, meanwhile, returning to work like any parent should.

I don’t have the answers, or insight, on the Ali situation, I am here simply identifying with the troubles that come when one person attempts to cut others off.  When the person being “protected” is unable to care for himself as Ali evidently was at the time, it’s truly a hard call.

There’s a lot of caretaker AND elder abuse going on these days.   I would also mention here that towards the end of her life, my mother was dealing with Parkinson’s and was on on so many drugs towards the end.  I made two calls to APS regarding (a) financial and (b) medical exploitation, but they went nowhere, and at this time, I was in survival mode already.

 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2275938/Dying-Ali-fearsome-fourth-wife-savage-family-feud-30m-fortune.html

 

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martinplaut

Journalist specialising in the Horn of Africa and Southern Africa

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