1st Jesse Owens Award goes posthumously to Muhammad Ali

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Muhammad ALI, The Legend of BOXING, The Man, fighting BOXER Fight in New York's Madison Square Garden on 29 September 1977

Muhammad ALI, The Legend of BOXING, The Man, fighting BOXER Fight in New York's Madison Square Garden on 29 September 1977 (Photo: THILL Arthur)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — The first Jesse Owens Olympic Spirit Award will recognize the late Muhammad Ali.

The Owens Award was started this year, the 80th anniversary of Owens' four-gold-medal performance at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, and is to be presented annually to recognize people who have served as an inspiration in society.

Muhammad Ali Visits Ennis in County Clare, Ireland, 1 Septmeber 2009.
Muhammad Ali Visits Ennis in County Clare, Ireland, 1 Septmeber 2009.

Owens' granddaughter, Marlene Dortch, will present the award at next week's Best of the Games awards ceremony to Ali's widow, Lonnie.

Ali won the gold medal at the Rome 1960 Olympics, then took three world heavyweight championships — in 1964, 1974 and 1978.

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