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President Obama will not be traveling to Kentucky for Muhammad Ali’s memorial service later this week as it conflicts with his daughter Malia’s high school graduation, the White House said.
Ali, who died last Friday of septic shock at the age of 74, will be put to rest on Friday in his hometown of Louisville. Obama has offered his condolences to Ali’s widow Lonnie in a phone call, the BBC reported, but will spend Friday at the high school commencement ceremony at Sidwell Friends School in Washington, where Malia is a graduating senior and his younger daughter, Sasha, just finished freshman year.
Obama and his wife Michelle have also written a letter to Ali’s family, which will travel to Kentucky with White House senior advisor Valerie Jarrett, who knew the late boxer. Former President Bill Clinton will speak at the funeral, and numerous other dignitaries — including Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan — will be among the congregation.