Only later did I learn more about and appreciate even more the man.
I always knew of the controversy that took his title away, but only as I became more mature did I appreciate how courageous his anti-war stance was at the time he took it.
And only as I followed his post-boxing career could I appreciate how he reached out to the world, seeking to bridge chasms and bring people together.
Ali was only a man and had flaws. But he rose above them like few of us do.
He ennobled us by his life and good works.
And made us all better.