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A chat with the champ
Alfred Mae Drakeford and friends met Ali in 1985
Drakeford and Ali
Alfred Mae Drakeford, far right, with Muhammad Ali. Drakeford and two of her friends, all from Camden, met the championship boxer in 1985 while on a girls weekend to New York City. They met Ali on the front steps of the Vista Hotel as they were about to enter and he walked down the steps toward them. Born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. in Louisville, Ky., Ali died Sunday at the age of 74 in Scottsdale, Ariz., after fighting a long battle with Parkinsons Disease, with which he was diagnosed in 1984. - photo by Provided by Alfred Mae Drakeford
Alfred Mae Drakeford remembers the moment like it was yesterday. The “moment” happened in 1985 in New York City when she and two friends from Camden, in The Big Apple for a girl’s weekend, bumped into a legend on the front steps of their hotel. Drakeford and two of her friends were on their way into the Vista Hotel when one of them recognized a tall, handsome gentleman coming down the steps toward them.