A CO Donegal man has described his meeting with Muhammad Ali as “a dream come true.”
Tony Kelly, from Greencastle, now lives in Louisville, Kentucky, where his wife is Megan is from. The couple met when Megan was working at an organic farm in Inishowen during a trip to Ireland.
Twenty-four-year-old Tony knew Muhammad Ali lived in the city; but never dreamed he would meet him.
Until last Friday that was, when Tony knocked on his hero’s door – and got to meet sporting and boxing legend.
“I have always been a massive Muhammad Ali and never thought that I would ever get the chance to meet the legend,” plumber Tony told Donegal Daily.
“But if the opportunity ever arose that I would take it. It was just my lucky day on Friday that I was across the road from his house.
“When my work mates told me it was Ali’s house I was a bit suspicious but then I started to believe them. I said ‘feck it’ it, i’m gonna call down.
“So at lunch time I walked to his door and knocked,Yolanda, his wife, answered the door and I explained to her that I was a huge fan of Ali’s and it would be a great honuor to be able to meet him.
“She told me that Muhammad was unavailable at the moment and to call back in an hour’s time, and that he would be delighted to meet one of his Irish fans as he is proud of his Irish heritage.
“An hour later I called back and was welcomed in to their home and Muhammad was sitting on his chair I introduced myself and said hello, he said hello back, and we posed for a few pictures.
“They all said how lucky I was as they spend very little time in that house and it was just a case of right place right time.
“Muhammad Ali has fans all over the world and he is such a people person that they didn’t mind me calling by, but it was just a ballsy move that paid off for me and I got to meet a true living legend.”