Boxing legend Muhammad Ali, the self-proclaimed Greatest of all-time — a title he lived up to inside the ring and outside as well — died on Friday at the age of 74.
A titan of sports and popular culture, Ali’s death was mourned on social media by celebrities from all corners, including Barack Obama, Justin Timberlake, Oprah Winfrey, Madonna, Donald Trump, Mark Wahlberg, Caitlyn Jenner, and J.K. Rowling. Words written by Ali himself have also been circulated in tribute.
“I would like to be remembered as a man who won the heavyweight title three times, who was humorous, and who treated everyone right,” Ali wrote in his 2004 memoir, The Soul of a Butterfly: Reflections on a Life’s Journey. “As a man who never looked down on those who looked up to him, and who helped as many people as he could. As a man who stood up for his beliefs no matter what. As a man who tried to unite all humankind through faith and love. And if all that’s too much, then I guess I’d settle for being remembered only as a great boxer who became a leader and a champion of his people. And I wouldn’t even mind if folks forgot how pretty I was.”
GALLERY: Muhammad Ali, A Life In Pictures
Read ahead to see more reactions from stars.
The sporting universe has just suffered a big loss. Muhammad Ali was my friend, my idol, my hero. We spent many moments together and always kept a good connection throughout the years. The sadness is overwhelming. I wish him peace with God. And I send love and strength to his family. // O universo do esporte sofre uma grande perda. Muhammad Ali era meu amigo, meu idolo, meu heroi. Passamos muitos momentos juntos e sempre mantivemos contatos todos esses anos. A tristeza é enorme. Desejo que ele descanse junto a Deus e amor e força à sua familia. #RIP @muhammadali
Today my heart goes out to a pioneer, a true legend, and a hero by all means! Not a day went by entering the gym that I didn't think of you. Your charisma, your charm and above all, your class are all of the elements that will be greatly missed by myself and the world. You are someone that inspired me greatly throughout my boxing journey and words cannot express how great you were as a person! Thank you for everything you've done for Black America, in the the world of sports & entertainment and for the legacy you leave behind! My sincerest condolences to the Ali family!