LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – Bike building in the middle of Fourth Street Live downtown with The Greatest looking on.
So many know the story – a young Cassius Clay rode his bike to the then Columbia Gym in downtown Louisville back in the 1950’s when it was later stolen.
Clay was so angry, he told police officer Joe Martin what happened and his plans for revenge.
Officer Martin helped that young boy channel that energy into boxing and the Louisville Lip was born.
“He took his anger in that situation and actually became his trainer and taught him how to box. So simply because he reached out to us and there was an officer that identified that he could actually offer more than just law enforcement services, he created a wealth of opportunity for Muhammad Ali and that's something that Muhammad Ali always gave back to the city,” Demetrius Latham, an LMPD recruit said.
This year marked a year after Muhammad Ali's death and his hometown is in the midst of growing violence but what you see at the bike building event so much more than new bikes, this is the new beginning to some wonderful relationships.
“Just showing them that the police department is here for them and they can reach out to us and also if they need help, just ask for it,” Latham said.
EMT's, LMPD recruits and firefighters joined Together We Rise to team local foster children with a first responder, instilling so much more than just bike riding skills.
Simoon Bouttakoth, a participant tells us, “I learned that you can accomplish something no matter how hard you try.”
Thanks to Norton Children's Hospital, each of the 100 kids are also receiving a helmet and a backpack along with their new bike.
“Yes it was extremely fun and I've never built a real bike in my life," Jeremy Fell, another participant, said.
This event is called, “A Kid, A Cop and A Cause, we know what can happen when the two collide and so many involved say The Champ would be pleased.