FARAH SHOKOUHI: This is the Farah Show and I am proud to say that I have two distinguished guests today: one is Miss Khalilah Ali, a champion of Tae Kwon Do, the first woman with black belt, and ex-wife of Muhammad Ali; the other is Mr. Davood Roostaei, the world famous artist, who paints with his fingers, without using any brushes.
First, I would like to start with, Khalilah. Please tell our listeners a little about yourself.
KHALILAH: thank you very much for the introduction. Actually in 1974, I was in Iran and met Mr. Zokaei there for the first time there, and as I see him today in Javanan Radio studio, I can say that after so many years, still he is so handsome.
MR. ZOKAEI: Thank you so much, and I am so honored to see you again.
KHALILAH: I would like to thank Mr. Davood for bringing me here to tell my life story with Muhammad Ali.
Actually I am his first wife and we have four beautiful children: Rashida, Jamila, Maryam Ali, Muhammad, and of course I have two more children from my second marriage with Mr. Komacho, who is not with us anymore.
It has been very interesting journey having lived with Muhammad Ali, traveling all around the world, meeting lots of interesting people. Even though we are not together any more, we always stayed as friends, and we see each other regularly.
Now I have a new friend, Mr. Davood, an extraordinary man, an extremely talented artist who contributed so much to the society and we plan to take his paintings all over the world to help the children in need create a peaceful place for them to live and grow.
FARAH: Tell me, when did you two meet?
Khalilah: Actually, I met Davood in an art exhibition when he was on his worldwide tour at Art Palm Beach Florida about six months ago. Even though there was over 200 exhibitors, his art paintings really stood out, and his special matador outfit. I was so impressed, I went and I introduced myself to him. I was so thankful and grateful that he dedicated all his life to helping children because that is the way I am. I dedicate myself to children, teaching them good manners. Davood is truly a great role model for children and young men all over the world, and I was really excited to meet him. He has such a warm and great personality, and positive energy. His paintings are unbelievable.
His new products which are coming out in a near future like t-shirts, hats ,shoes, pants, belts and dresses are so incredible and unique. We plan to sell them and raise money to help hungry children and to buy school supplies for those who cannot afford education.
Davood is going to be around for long time, he is the modern Van Gogh, the modern Michael Angelo, and the Picasso of this era. To me no painter can come close to meet his standards.
A lot of people claim that they help children, but they don’t; yet this man really does. He dedicated all of his life helping children.
DAVOOD: Thank you so much, it is a great honor that people like Khalilah Ali, Jacksons, or others that respect my art and love them, because they know that my paintings are creation of my heart and my soul, and we all have the same goal to bring love and unity in this world. That is why this energy brings us together, so hand in hand we reach to our goal of helping children.
Khalilah: Davood is so well rounded; his paintings consist of all nationalities and are dedicated to Black history, Armenian history, Latin American and others. His paintings are so good; I gave him this idea that we should plan a travel tour with his paintings to all major cities in the United States. We want all Americans to have the privilege of seeing first hand these paintings, a real art. And we want to auction off some of the paintings to raise money to help the needy children all over America.
We are trying to give series of paintings to the boxing world, so his name will be in the hall of fame, and also soccer players, like Pele, he was one of them, we don’t see any painting about Pele. I met him in Cairo, Egypt, he is one of the greatest players ever. Davood can paint a series of paintings about great players of Argentina as well, so all people in the world can learn about their athletics and historians through his art.
FARAH: So Miss Khalilah, you’re a black belt, aren’t you?
Khalilah: Yes, I have nine of them to be exact. When I was seven years old, I got the first one, but I never bragged about it. When I got married to Muhammad Ali, he realized that he had a real power behind his hands and actually he said one day to Howard Kessel, “I married a woman who can actually knock me out,” but I never bragged about that, either.
FARAH: Now tell us about your love story, and how you met Muhammad Ali?
KhalilaH: I met him and I amazed him when I was 10 , and he was 18 years old. He told me that I should have his autograph because he is going to be the champion of the world at the age of 21.
I asked him his name, and he said “Cassius Marcel Clay.” I said “Are you proud of this name?
“Two Roman names that people hate because of what Romans did to them, and Clay like dirt molds? I don’t think so.”’
I gave him back the autograph and said, “When you come back with a name of culture, dignity, and respect, then we will talk,” and then I walked away. He was so upset.
He came back later on and said, “My name is Muhammad Ali, and now how do you like this name?” I approved it and now something could happen.
FARAH: He was the champion at that time?
Khalilah: yes he had a gold medal from Italy.
FARAH: How about when you got married?
Khalilah: No, they stripped him of his title because he refused to go to Army.
FARAH: How long were you married?
Khalilah: Ten long years we had a great life together, traveling all over the world meeting lots of presidents, kings, and queens just like the Shah and Queen of Iran.
FARAH: Tell me about these two rings on Davood’s fingers?
Khalilah: As you see these two rings with gold and diamonds with the writing, “Three Time World Champion 1964, 1974 and 1978″ belong to Muhammad Ali. I was keeping them all these years.
This is very interesting, now last week I was with Davood and we spoke to Muhammad Ali. After Davood talked to him, he asked me to give Davood both rings and he said, “Davood is the only one who deserves to wear these rings because I want my power to be transferred to his fingers to create the most powerful paintings to be able to help more children all over the world.”
DAVOOD: I am so grateful to you Miss Khalilah and Muhammad Ali, and he will remain the world champion in my heart.
FARAH: Tell me about the book of your life story that is to be released.
Khalilah: Actually, it will be ready by the end of this year. Besides my life with Muhammad Ali, the champion of the world, at the end of the bok it will talk about an extraordinary man, a prophet, a genius, a real human being, my true brother, Mr. Davood Roostaei.
And I thank you all for this invitation.