Legendary boxer Muhammad Ali, who died late Friday at 74, received a bevy of honors through his life, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom — the highest civilian award of the United States.
 
President George W. Bush bestowed the medal on Ali in November 2005, calling him “a fierce fighter and a man of peace.”
 
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“When you say the greatest of all time is in the room, everyone knows who you mean. Quite a claim to make, but as Muhammad Ali once said, ‘it’s not bragging if you can back it up,’ ” Bush said. “And this man backed it up.”
 
The president honored Ali’s boxing legacy as well as his work for justice.
 
“Far into the future, fans and students of boxing will study the films and some will even try to copy his style. But certain things defy imitation,” Bush said.
 
“The real mystery, I guess, is how he stayed so pretty,” he continued, to laughter. “Probably had to do with his beautiful soul.”
 
“Across the world, billions know Muhammad Ali as a brave, compassionate, charming man. The American people are proud to call Muhammad Ali one of our own.”
 
Watch Bush’s speech and the medal ceremony in the video above.