Muhammad Ali is a role model for me because he led the nation of Islam with Malcolm X for African American equality .He also was a role model because of his immense strength and footwork. Muhammad was also a great choice because of his giant struggle with Parkinson’s disease. He has been diagnosed at age 42. Ali hasn’t had a large impact on my life but he is definitely someone I look up to. Muhammad Ali was born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. on January 17, 1942. He was born in Louisville, Kentucky. Cassius began boxing at age 12. One of the people he looked up to most was Joe Martin, a police officer. Cassius met Joe after one day his bike had been stolen and he wanted to report it. Martin told him that he better learn how to fight if he wanted his bike back. Clay began training with Martin at the Columbia gym six days a week. In 1996, Cassius stated his first reactions to Columbia gym, he said: I ran downstairs, crying, but the sights and sounds and the smell of the boxing gym excited me so much that I almost forgot about the bike,'' Ali wrote. ''There were about 10 boxers in the gym, some hitting the speed bag, some in the ring, sparring, some jumping rope. I stood there, smelling the sweat and rubbing alcohol, and a feeling of awe came over me. One slim boy shadowboxing in the ring was throwing punches almost too fast for my eyes to follow. (Ali) Every night after the Columbia gym closes Cassius made his way to the Grace Community Center where he trained with Fred Stoner, a black man trying to keep young Cassius clay off the streets.
By the time Cassius turned sixteen he won two national AAU titles, six Kentucky Golden Gloves, and two Golden Glove championships. Cassius dropped out of high school in March 1958 to pursue his boxing career. His goal was to fight in the 1960 Olympics. After his drop out of high school boxing scouts saw many flaws in Clay’s technique, but saw even more talent, skill, and determination. When he dropped out his reflexes were that...
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