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"Muhammad's not an easy person when it comes to boxing because Muhammad thought he knew how to train himself. He had that ego. But Angelo somehow realized that the best way to make Muhammad great was to get out of his way, to let him do his thing. He really didn't have to coach him. He just had to come in and do the little things. ... Angelo was able to do that with each and every one of his fighters."
Dundee's career, which led to his induction into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1992, spanned six decades. He last got together with Ali for The Greatest's 70th birthday party last month in Louisville, Ky. -- a visit that Dundee's son said meant a lot to his father.
With the native of south Philadelphia in his corner, Ali became the first to win the heavyweight title three times. Dundee began working with Leonard late in Ali's career and trained him for many of the former welterweight champion's biggest fights, too.
Dundee joined Foreman in 1994 to help him become the oldest heavyweight champion at age 45.
"He made all of our lives better," said Arum, who promoted some of Ali's biggest bouts.
"Dad was a simple guy. He never thought he was anything special," Jimmy Dundee said, adding that his father treated everyone he met -- from wide-eyed little kids on the street to the fighters he helped win championships -- the same.
"Dad loved everyone. No one wasn't his friend. We've got people here from the rehab center where he stayed six days. ... All the fighters in dad's past life loved him because they weren't fighters, they were family."
Two hours before the service, Jimmy Dundee smiled while recalling some of his father's most memorable moments in boxing, including refusing to allow a then young Cassius Clay to quit in his first title fight against Sonny Liston, and practically willing Leonard to shrug off a beating he was taking from Thomas Hearns to win a championship bout.
"When you walk through history, there are moments you have to grab to make them special," the son said. "Dad always seemed to be in the right place at the right time."
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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