On June 3, 2016, Louisville's greatest son Muhammad Ali passed away at age 74, succumbing to his 30-year fight against Parkinson's disease. Seven days later, I stood with our entire city as I said goodbye to our hero, but I knew in that moment that we could do more to remember his legacy.
Ali was undoubtedly boxing's most brash, its most colorful, and its greatest champion. The proud Louisvillian went on to become not only boxing's greatest champion but an instrumental global ambassador and humanitarian for peace.
Although we are saddened by his passing, one of Ali's greatest achievements was in his death. His memorial service brought together people from all walks of life: rich, poor, learned, unlearned, regardless of race, color, creed, national origin, and religion.
After the great outpouring of interfaith and multiracial solidarity and love displayed at Muhammad Ali's funeral, we want to join together with people of all faiths to make this dream a reality of honoring this great man together in our call to rename the Louisville airport: Muhammad Ali International airport.
Muhammad Ali brought the world together, his homegoing service was his greatest contribution to our global community. His message was simple: peace, love, understanding, and using inspiration to maximize our human potential. In Louisville, for 8 days, our city stood still in remembrance of this great man as there was not a single murder in a time when we have seen a continuing rise in violence in our city.
Renaming Louisville International Airport, often times referred to as Standiford Field (SDF), will bring attention to the humanitarian legacy of Muhammad Ali and our great city.
Although some may see this as a simple name change, we have an opportunity to show the world our appreciation for Ali's legacy and his life. It's an opportunity to unite our city and the world in the name of Peace and Love. It's what Ali was all about.
We call upon people all over the globe to participate in our efforts. Ali inspired people all over the world to come together and shed our differences. This is an opportunity to unite in Ali's life mission.
We humbly invite you to join our effort to rename our airport to Muhammad Ali International.
Robert Holmes III