LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Rahman Ali says his comments were taken out of context. The younger brother of former heavyweight champ Muhammad Ali has been quoted in two different stories over the last week, claiming that Muhammad is near death.
The latest story, appearing in the National Enquirer, also raises the question as to whether or not Muhammad has been the victim of elder abuse at the hands of his wife, Lonnie.
"I have not read the articles that have been said about me in the newspaper, but I heard one statement about Lonnie, and my sister-in-law called me and says, Rahman did you say these things about me and Muhammad, I said, no this was all taken out of context," Rahman told WAVE 3 News. "I did not say what they said. I totally deny what the press has said, I would never, ever hurt Muhammad Ali or Lonnie, or say negative things about them. They are very positive people, have been positive in my life, real sweet hearts, so all of the things that have been said about me have been taken out of context. I was misquoted, totally misquoted, I did not say those things."
When asked what Lonnie has meant to his brother, Rahman responded, "Everything, everything. Before he got sick and could not talk, he said I love Lonnie dearly, he said, my wife is everything for me. I love Lonnie dearly for the way she takes care of my brother."
Sentiments echoed by John Ramsey, an employee of WAVE-TV, and a longtime family friend of the Ali's.
"I've never seen a woman, in my entire life, more committed to a man than Lonnie is to Muhammad," Ramsey said.
Rahman says his brother's health has remained stable. "Something else he told me, he said "Rahman, don't worry about me, my motor skills are bad, but my mind is clear, I feel good, I am okay, don't worry."
Muhammad Ali is 71-years-old and has battled Parkinson's disease since 1984.
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