The International Boxing Hall of Fame inducted its inaugural class with the help of Muhammad Ali and a number of other living legends of the sport.
Over 600 people assembled Sunday to witness the induction of 53 charter members in four categories, including Ali, Joe Louis, Rocky Marciano and Sugar Ray Robinson.The 90-minute induction marked the first time an official ceremony has been held to enshrine boxers in a permanent hall of fame, according to executive director Edward Brophy.
"Now fans have a place to go to see boxing's great champions remembered," said Brophy, adding that the museum's claim as "the" hall of fame now grows stronger.
There are other boxing halls of fame, such as the one established by Ring Magazine, but those are nothing more than "paper" halls, said Hall of Fame President Don Ackerman.
In addition to plaques, each inductee will be immortalized with a plaster casting of his fist, said Ackerman.
Thirteen of the fifteen living members enshrined as charter members attended the weekend-long activities, which included a professional fight Friday featuring North American Boxing Federation super bantamweight champion Tracy Patterson and a parade of champions on Sunday.