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Larry King Biography

Posted On May 14th, 2021 By Celebrity Biographies

Larry King was an American television and radio host. He hosted over 60,000 interviews in his career. Truly, the best television host of all time.

Larry King

Early Life

Larry King was born Larry Harvey Zeiger on November 19, 1933, in Brooklyn, New York. He was born to his mother Jennie, who was a garment worker, and his father, Aaron Zeiger, who was a restaurant owner and a defense plant worker. Larry’s parents were Orthodox Jews who immigrated to the United States in the year 1930, from Belarus. Larry was just 9 years old when his father died of a heart attack at the age of 44. As a result, Larry, his mother, and his brother had to attain government welfare for their basic needs. Larry was deeply affected by his father’s death and subsequently lost interest in education. He finished high school and started working as a mail clerk, in order to support his mother. From a very young age, He always had a strong desire to work in radio broadcasting.

Radio Career

Larry King was looking for a job when he accidentally met a CBS staff announcer. He told Larry, that Florida has a growing media market, who were looking for inexperienced, possibly new talents, in broadcasting. King took his advice and went to Miami where he landed a job at a small radio station called WAHR. It wasn’t his dream job though. He was hired as a cleaner at the station, also assigned to do other petty tasks. But as fate would have it, one of the station’s announcers abruptly quit the job, and King was put on the air, as his replacement. His first radio broadcast was on May 1, 1957. King really impressed his station manager, and he was assigned the morning 9 to noon slot immediately. He was also allotted a couple of afternoon news broadcasts and a sportscast. All this for a $55 a week salary.

At this time, Larry was still known as Larry Zeiger. However, the station’s general manager was not particularly happy with his last name “Zeiger”. He thought that the name was difficult to remember. Minutes before his broadcast, Larry saw an advertisement in the Miami Herald newspaper for the King’s Wholesale Liquor. He then decided to choose “King” as his last name. Two years down the line, he legally changed his name to Larry King.

Larry King started conducting interviews for the radio station WIOD. The venue was the Pumpernik’s Restaurant at Miami Beach. Having heard King’s interviews, American singer, Bobby Darin, walked into the restaurant and became King’s first celebrity guest for an interview. King soon found popularity in South Florida. Soon after, in the year 1960, King premiered his first television show called “Miami Undercover”. He instantly gained a lot of following in Miami. He was allotted a column in the entertainment section of the leading newspapers, Miami Herald and Miami News.

In 1964, television legend and comedian, Jackie Gleason, was taping a national television variety show in Miami Beach. Larry King met Jackie and they spent hours talking about television production, studio lighting, etc. Larry King considered Jackie Gleason as a mentor of his and credited him for teaching the art of television production.

In the year 1970, WIOD gave Larry King more exposure as an expert commentator for Miami Dolphins of the National Football League. Everything was going smoothly for his career, until, 20 December 1971. Larry King was arrested after being accused of grand larceny by a former business partner, Louis Wolfson. Larry was dismissed by WIOD and also as the sports commentator. He also lost his weekly column in the Miami Herald Sun newspaper. In the following year, Larry was acquitted of all charges, but, he was now in debt and publicly disgraced. Hereon, Larry tried to rebuild his career by writing articles for magazines. WIOD hired him again after the verdict and he hosted a sports talk show for the station, called Sports-a-la-King.

Larry King Show

The Larry King Show was a nightly coast-to-coast program on the Mutual Broadcasting System. It was first broadcasted on January 30, 1978. The show was broadcast live, Monday to Friday, from midnight to 5:30 in the morning. The program started where King would interview a guest for the first hour, followed by questions from the callers for the guest for another two hours. At 3 a.m. the segment called “Open Phone America” would commence, where King allowed his callers to discuss any topic they pleased. The show quickly gained a lot of popularity, so much so, that the fans called themselves “King-aholics”. The show had 28 affiliates when it commenced, but the number grew to above 500 affiliate stations in a very short span of time. The show was a great success until Larry King decided to step down in the year 1994.

Larry King Live

Larry King Show was a great success and caught the attention of media mogul, Ted Turner. In June 1985, he hired Larry King to run his own television show on Cable News Network (CNN). Larry interviewed variety of people, including politicians, entertainment industry celebrities, scientists, president, sport stars to even psychics and conspiracy theorists.

King was known for his soft, direct, non-confrontational approach. People would open up to him, without any hesitation. He never used to read about the celebrities or guests before interview and then would approach them with easy, open-ended questions. Everyone felt at utmost comfort talking to him. According to CNN, Larry King conducted over 30,000 interviews in his whole career.

Larry King Live was recognized by The Guinness Book of World Records, as the longest running television show, hosted by the same person, on the same network, in the same time slot. Larry King retired in 2010, after taping his 6000th episode, after successfully running the show for 25 years.

Larry King Live was last aired on December 6, 2010. He thanked his audience for watching him and supporting him over the years. He also confirmed that he will remain with CNN to host occasional specials, until, on February 17, 2012, when CNN and Larry King confirmed that they were parting ways.

Larry King Now

A moth after retiring, in March 2012, Larry King co-founded Ora Tv, along with a Mexican business tycoon, Carlos Slim. Later in July same year, they launched an interview talk show hosted by Larry King, called Larry King Now. On January 16, 2013, they celebrated it’s 100th episode. King later stated, that he does not plan to retire and will host his shows till the day he dies.

Side Projects

Larry King had a booming career as a radio broadcaster and a TV talk show host. But outside his career, he did several movies and TV series. He did cameos in “Ghostbusters”, “Shrek 2”, “Shrek The Third”, “John Q” and “Bee Movie”. He played himself in the movie “The People v O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story”. He also appeared on TV series such as “30 Rock”, “Arthur”, “Gravity Falls’ and “Law & Order”.

In 1987, Larry King suffered a heart attack. He then founded the “Larry King Cardiac Foundation” which is a non-profit organization, providing life-saving cardiac treatments to the less fortunate who otherwise cannot afford the treatments.

King has always been an active writer. He published his autobiography in the year 2009, named “My Remarkable Journey”.

Personal Life

Larry King was married eight times to seven women. He had been in and out of marriages throughout his adult life. He married Freda Miller, his high-school sweetheart in the year 1952. However, their parents reportedly got their marriage annulled, just the following year.

He briefly married his second wife, Annette Kaye and had a son, named Larry Jr. in November, 1961.

In 1961, Larry married her third wife, Alene Akins, who was a Playboy Bunny. He also adopted Alene’s son, Andy. Again the marriage lasted only for a year.

In the year 1963, King married Mary Francis Sutphin. The marriage ended soon after, when Mary divorced him.

He later remarried his third wife, Alene Akins. They had a girl named “Chaia” in 1969. The marriage ended in 1972.

On September 1976, Larry King married his fifth wife. Sharon Lepore was a mathematics teacher and a production assistant. They got divorced in 1983.

In 1989, Larry King met a businesswoman named Julie Alexander. He proposed to her on their very first date and the couple got married four months later in October 1989. King and his sixth wife got divorced in the year 1992.

Larry King got engaged to “Land of the Giants” actress, Deanna Lund, but they never got married.

In 1997, he married his seventh wife, Shawn Southwick who is a singer, actress, and television host. Together they had two children, Chance (born March 1999) and Cannon (born May 2000). He was also a stepfather to Daniel Aaron Southwick, who is an American Football quarterback. Larry and Shawn filed for divorced in 2010 but reconciled. However, in 2019, they filed for divorce again.

So, Larry King had seven wives, five children, nine grand children and four great grand children.

Larry King resided in Beverly Hills, California.

He was a Dodgers fan throughout his life.

King did not believe in God. He was fully atheist and a proud Jew.


Larry King had a major heart attack on February 24, 1987. To monitor his heart condition, he got annual chest X-rays. In the year 2017, during one his medical examinations, doctors discovered a cancerous tumor in his lungs. With timely and proper treatment, the tumor was successfully removed.

King underwent angioplasty in April 2019. He also had stents inserted in his heart. Later that year, King admitted that he had a stroke in March and was in a coma for weeks. He even contemplated committing suicide after the stroke. He said “I thought I was just going to bite the bullet. I didn’t want to live this way.”

In January 2021, Larry King got tested positive for COVID 19 virus. He was able to recover from the coronavirus, but succumbed to sepsis as complication. Larry Harvey King breathed his last on January 23, 2021. He was 87.


Larry King won the “Peabody Award for Excellence” for radio broadcasting (1982) and television shows (1992).

He was inducted in “National Radio Hall of Fame” in 1989, and “Broadcaster Hall of Fame” in 1992.

In 2002, Talkers Magazine named King, the top television host of all time.

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Muhammad Ali Biography

Posted On December 8th, 2018 By Celebrity Biographies

Muhammad Ali Biography
Muhammad Ali Biography

Muhammad Ali was an American boxing legend, a social activist and a philanthropist. He is considered the most notable and celebrated sports athlete of the 20th century. Arguably, he is also the greatest known boxing heavyweight champion of all time and was nicknamed “The Greatest”.

Early Life & Amateur Career

Muhammad Ali’s birth name was Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. and was born on 17 January 1942 to parents Cassius Marcellus Clay Sr. (1912-1990) and Odessa O’Grady Clay (1917-1994). His father was a billboard and sign painter while his mother worked as a domestic helper. He also had a sister and four brothers.

Ali attended Central High School in Louisville. He suffered from dyslexia which troubled him a lot with reading and writing in the school and even later in his life. Moreover, he grew amid racial discrimination. His mother recollected one such an incident when he was not allowed to have a glass of water at a store. She said “They wouldn’t give him one because of his color. That really affected him.”

Ali was 12 years old when he met Joe E. Martin, who was a policeman and a boxing coach. It was fate that brought them together. Ali’s bike got stolen and when he met the police officer, he told him that he wanted to beat up the thief. “I want to whup the thief”, he said. Martin replied, “Well, you better learn how to fight before you start challenging people.” Ali didn’t take boxing seriously at this time, so he rejected Martin’s offer. But after a few days, he watched amateur boxing on television. He really got interested in boxing since that. So he started training with Fred Stoner at a local gym and this is how he began his boxing career. He credits Stoner with giving him the “real training”, eventually molding “my style, my stamina, and my system.”

In Muhammad Ali’s first amateur bout in the year 1954, he won the fight by a split decision. He then went on to win the “1956 Golden Gloves Tournament” for amateurs in the light heavyweight category. Later in 1959, Ali conquered the “National Golden Gloves Tournament of Champions”, and also the “Amateur Athletic Union” title for the light heavyweight category. In 1960, he got his gold medal in boxing light heavyweight category in the Summer Olympics, Rome. Muhammad Ali’s amateur boxing record stood at 100 wins and only 5 losses. After his Olympic triumph, Muhammad Ali was declared as an American hero. Louisville Sponsoring Group backed Ali with the sponsorships, so he decided to turn professional.

Professional Career

Muhammad Ali made his professional boxing debut on October 29, 1960, against Tunney Hunsaker. He won the bout in six rounds. For the next six years, Ali went on to win 19 matches without losing any match. 15 of those matches were won by knockouts. These weren’t small fights by any means. He defeated several distinguished boxers including Jim Robinson, Tony Esperti, Donnie Fleeman, Alonzo Johnson, George Logan, Willi Besmanoff, LaMar Clark, Doug Jones, Henry Cooper, and his former trainer Archie Moore.

In each of these bouts, Ali used to vocally belittle his opponents and bragged about his own strength. He once referred to Doug Jones as an “ugly little man” and called Henry Cooper a “bum”. He also said that getting in the ring with Alex Miteff was very embarrassing for him and that the popular arena “Madison Square Garden” was “too small for him”. Later in an interview, Ali admitted that he was motivated by the professional wrestler “Gorgeous George Wagner” and it was him who inspired Ali for using such provocative wrestling lingo when he did all the interviews. At the same time, Ali used to refer himself as “the greatest”. He always used to boast about his strengths before a fight. His one such self-praising phrases became an instant hit when he said that he could “float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” in a boxing ring.

Muhammad Ali was rising to the top, still undefeated. In 1963, he became the top contender for Sonny Liston’s title, who was the boxing World Heavyweight Champion. Liston was a dominating boxer and intimidating as well. He was favored to win the bout between him and Ali. However, that did not stop Ali from making provocative comments before the fight. He said that Liston was “the big ugly bear” and “he even smells like a bear”. He further added that “after I beat him I’m going to donate him to the zoo.” Just before the fight, in the ring, Ali shouted at Liston saying “someone is going to die at ringside tonight.” Most of the spectators believed that Ali was afraid and all the trash talking was out of fear. Ali was clearly the underdog in the match with odds stacking 7-1 against him. But Ali rose to the occasion and defeated Liston in the 7th round by TKO (Technical Knockout). The outcome was a major upset. Ali became the youngest (22 years) boxer ever to take the title of a Heavyweight Championship from a reigning champion. After the fight, Ali paced towards the ringside press and shouted “Eat your words! I am the greatest! I shook up the world. I’m the prettiest thing that ever lived.” Liston and Ali had a rematch again in the year 1965. The whole fight lasted for less than 2 minutes as Ali knocked out Liston in the very first round. Ali’s impressive professional boxing record now stood at 21 wins and 0 losses.

In 1966, Muhammad Ali refused to be inducted in the armed forces, which was obligatory in those days. Leading to his refusal from the draft, boxing associations of every state in  America, systematically, refused boxing license to Ali and also stripped his passport. As a result, Ali was not able to fight in his prime time from the year 1967 to 1970. He had to give away his heavyweight championship. He was granted a boxing license by the City of Atlanta Athletic Commission in August 1970, where he fought and bested Jerry Quarry in three rounds. A few weeks later, New York State Boxing Commission had to reinstate Ali’s license after losing the case in Federal Court. Ali fought Oscar Bonavena in Madison Square Garden and won the match by a technical knockout. Muhammad Ali raised his tally to a remarkable 31 wins from 31 fights and was again a contender for the championship against Joe Frazier.

Before the fight, Joe Frazier had fought 26 bouts and won all 26. The whole world got so excited and enthusiastic about the bout between the two undefeated boxing stars, that the match was nicknamed “The Fight of the Century”.

Ali started training for the match at a farm at Reading, Pennsylvania. He loved training in the countryside so much that he decided to build a real training camp in Deer Park, Pennsylvania. This camp was named “Fighter Heaven” and Ali trained here for all of his fights for rest of his career from 1972 to 1981.

Days leading up to the fight with Frazier, Muhammad Ali started with the trash talking and name calling. He described Frazier as a “dumb tool of the white establishment.” Often referring to him as “Uncle Tom”, he also said that “Frazier is too ugly and dumb to be champ”.

It was March 8, 1971, the night of one of the biggest fights in boxing history. The bout was broadcasted in 35 countries outside America. The match started with Ali constantly engaging Frazier and putting him under pressure. Frazier, however, kept on attacking Ali’s body in particular and scoring regularly. In the first few rounds, the score looked even, but Ali had never taken this much beating in his entire career. Ali showcased what was to become his famous rope-a-dope strategy for the first time in this match. He leaned upon the ropes and absorbed as many hits as he could from Frazier, in order to tire him. In the final round of the match, Frazier knocked down Ali with a fierce left hook. The match referee asserted, “that was as hard as a man can be hit”. Ali though got back on his feet in just three seconds. After the final round, Frazier stood triumphant by a unanimous decision, giving Muhammad Ali, his first ever defeat in his professional career.

After losing to Joe Frazier, Ali went on to win a total of 9 fights in the year 1971 and 1972. In March 1973, American boxer, Ken Norton broke Ali’s jaw, resulting in the second loss of his career. Ali was 31 years old and he considered retiring from the sport, but instead, he got himself a rematch with Ken Norton, which he won by a split decision.

On January 28, 1974, a rematch was set between Muhammad Ali and his old rival, Joe Frazier. Frazier had already lost his World Heavyweight Championship, a year back, to George Foreman (nicknamed, The Big George). This fight was as intense as the first one. Ali attacked and shocked Frazier in the initial rounds, but Frazier came back strongly in the middle rounds to level up the scores. Ali was aware of Frazier left hook and moved swiftly to avoid the mistake that he made in their first fight. The last four rounds saw both fighters head to head, advancing and attacking and the momentum continued to shift from one to another. After the final round, Muhammad Ali was declared the winner by the judges, unanimously.

The victory against Joe Frazier set the stage for Muhammad Ali to fight for the heavyweight champion title which was being held by George Foreman. The match was set at Kinshasa, Zaire, on October 30, 1974. The bout was nicknamed “The Rumble in the Jungle.”

George Foreman was recognized as one of the hardest punchers in boxing history. According to analysts, Muhammad Ali, even though more popular with the boxing fraternity and fans, was not favored to win the fight. In the past Joe Frazier and Ken Norton, both had defeated Muhammad Ali in some grave encounters. But both of them were knocked out in the second rounds by George Foreman. Moreover, Ali was not the young guy anymore. He was 32 years old now and he clearly had lost his speed and reflexes, compared to what he had in his twenties. So, almost no one thought that Ali stood a chance in this bout against the Big George.

A day prior to the fight, Ali appeared in front of the press, brimming with confidence. He said, “If you think the world was surprised when Nixon resigned, wait ’til I whup Foreman’s behind!” In another statement, he said “I’ve done something new for this fight. I done wrestled with an alligator, I done tussled with a whale; handcuffed lightning, thrown thunder in jail; only last week, I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalized a brick; I’m so mean I make medicine sick.” Muhammad Ali had an immense fan following in Zaire. Everywhere he went, the masses chanted “Ali, Kill him”.

The fight started with Ali moving swiftly, throwing right crosses on Foreman’s head, in the first round. To everyone’s dismay, Ali moved towards the corner and executed the rope-a-dope strategy. He invited Foreman to hit him. While he defended and counter-attacked him, he was verbally taunting Foreman. This infuriated Foreman as he started throwing wild punches that landed nowhere. Soon he started getting tired, and at this moment, Ali started advancing and attacking him much more frequently, with flurries of effective and hard-hitting punches. The crowd went berserk at this spectacle. Foreman was clearly exhausted and Ali knocked him down in the eighth round. The jubilant crowd cheered as Muhammad Ali, regained the World Heavyweight Champion title.

After the fight, George Foreman said: “I thought Ali was just one more knockout victim until, about the seventh round, I hit him hard to the jaw and he held me and whispered in my ear: ‘That all you got, George?’ I realized that this ain’t what I thought it was.”

After becoming the world heavyweight champion, Muhammad Ali agreed to another fight with Joe Frazier. The bout was scheduled for October 1, 1975, in Manila and was nicknamed “Thrilla in Manila”. In the first round, Ali moved aggressively and swiftly and attacked Frazier regularly. But again he decided to opt for rope-a-dope strategy. Ali took a heavy toll from Frazier’s attacks but did some effective counter-punching during this time. By the 12th round, Frazier seemed exhausted and Ali advanced and scored some fierce blows, that closed Frazier’s left eye and opened a cut above his right eye. He could barely see now as both his eyes were shut, but he kept on fighting. Ali dominated rounds 13th and 14th. Joe Frazier’s coach asked the fight to be stopped before the beginning of round 15, despite Frazier’s protests. Muhammad Ali won the match by TKO.

Reflecting on the fight, Ali said that this bout “was the closest thing to dying that I know”. He praised Joe Frazier as “the greatest fighter of all times next to me.”

Muhammad Ali fought Ken Norton for the third time on September 28, 1976, at Yankee Stadium, New York. Ali won the bout by a unanimous decision but it was a fiercely competed fight and the audience booed at the decision by the judges. Soon after, Ali announced his retirement from boxing, to practice his faith. However, he came out of retirement in May 1977 to fight the Uruguay boxer, Alfredo Evangelista. Ali won the fight after 15 rounds by a unanimous decision. Later that year he fought Earnie Shavers and won that fight too. Ali’s professional boxing record now stood at 57 bouts, 55 wins, and 2 losses.

Ferdie Pacheo, Ali’s longtime doctor was concerned with Ali’s condition, especially after his bout with Earnie Shavers. He reported that Ali’s kidneys were not working perfectly and advised Ali to consider retirement. He tried to convince Ali’s trainer, his wife and Ali himself but was ignored. Pacheo decided that enough was enough and called it quits.

Next year, on February 15, 1978, a fight was scheduled with Leon Spinks at Hilton Hotels, Las Vegas. Spinks, who started his professional boxing career in 1977, only had seven professional fights to his name out of which he won 6 and drew one. Ali took it lightly and didn’t do much training or preparations prior to the fight. Ali lost the match to Leon Spinks by a split decision, resulting in his third ever loss. He also lost the heavyweight champion title. On September 15, 1978, another match was set between Ali and Spinks at Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. Ali won the fight by a unanimous decision and regained the title for the heavyweight champion. Ali became to first boxer ever to win the heavyweight championship belt, three times. Again, Ali announced his retirement from the sport, on July 27, 1979, with 56 wins and 3 losses under his name.

Muhammad Ali desired to be the first boxer to win the heavyweight championship for the unprecedented fourth time. So he announced his comeback to fight Larry Holmes for the title. Ali was though, really out of shape. He had been taking thyroid medication to lose weight. He also started struggling with vocal stuttering and trembling hands at this point. Boxing writer Richie Giachetti wrote “Larry didn’t want to fight Ali. He knew Ali had nothing left; he knew it would be a horror.”

The fight between Muhammad Ali and Larry Holmes was set for October 2, 1980, at Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada. Larry dominated the fight since the first round. Angelo Dundee stepped in to stop the fight before the commencement of 11th round. Ali lost a match for the first time via stoppage. The fight was described by many as “awful”. Actor Sylvester Stallone who was at the ringside described the bout like watching an autopsy on a man who is still alive. This fight was later said to have contributed to Ali’s Parkinson’s disease.

Ali fought one last time against Canadian boxer, Trevor Berbick on December 11, 1981, which he lost after 10 rounds by a unanimous decision. In his last 4 bouts, Ali had lost 3 matches. At this moment, Ali was 39 years old and he decided to retire from the sport, once and for all. By the end of his career, Ali had absorbed more than 200,000 hits. His final professional record stood at 61 bouts, 56 wins, and 5 losses.

Conversion to Islam

Ali was aware of “Nation of Islam” (often referred to as Black Muslims) since 1959 when he was still an amateur boxing athlete. He first attended their conference in 1961 and kept on doing so until later, but decided not to publicize his involvement. However, when he decided to join the Nation of Islam, he was refused entry into the group due to his carrier in boxing. Things changed when he won the championship title from Liston in 1964. Nation of Islam was more than happy to have him aboard as a member. Soon after the fight, it was announced on a radio show by the leader of Nation of Islam, Elijah Muhammad, that formerly known Cassius Clay would be renamed as Muhammad Ali.

Ali later announced that “Cassius Clay is my slave name”. Just to let Americans know him further, he added “I am America. I am the part you won’t recognize. But get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me.”

Most of the white folks in America and some African American people use to consider Nation of Islam as a black separatists hate group who had the tendency to get violent. Muhammad Ali used his influence to spread Nation of Islam’s teachings. He said, “My enemy is the white people, not Viet Cong or Chinese or Japanese.”. When talking about integration, he said “We who follow the teachings of Elijah Muhammad don’t want to be forced to integrate. Integration is wrong. We don’t want to live with the white man; that’s all.” It was ironic, however, that while the Nation of Islam considered white people as some sort of devils, Ali on other hand had more white colleagues than any African American man, during those times. And he continued to have great relations with them, throughout his career.

In 1972, Ali went on to Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca where he met people of different colors from around the World. Here he gained different perspective and outlook towards life and gained much spiritual awareness. In 1977, he said that when he retires, he will dedicate rest of life to getting “ready to meet God” by helping people, charitable causes, uniting people and helping to make peace.

Later in his life, Muhammad Ali started developing an interest in Sufism, after reading the books of Inayat Khan. In the year 2005, he converted into Sufi Islam as he felt that was most inclined to Sufism teachings out of all Islamic sects. However, a few years later, the traditional Sunni-Sufis criticized the teachings of Inayat Khan as being contradictory to the true teachings of Sunni Islam. Ali then distanced himself from Inayat Khan’s teachings and instead sought guidance from various Sunni-Sufi scholars such as Grand Mufti of Syria Almarhum Asy-Syaikh Ahmed Kuftaro, Shaykh Hisham Kabbani, Imam Zaid Shakir, Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, and Dr. Timothy J. Gianotti.

Dr. Timothy J. Gianotti was at Muhammad Ali’s bedside throughout his last days and also assured that Ali’s funeral was in accordance with Islamic rites and customs.

Personal Life

Muhammad Ali was married four times. He had 9 children – seven daughters and two sons.

Ali met Sonji Roy who was a cocktail waitress and asked her to marry him on the very first date. A month later, on August 14, 1964, they got married. However, soon they started quarreling a lot. Specifically, as Sonji would not accept the Nation of Islam’s dress codes and customs. She also questioned the teachings of Elijah Muhammad. Their marriage failed and they got divorced on January 10, 1966. They did not have any children. Reflecting on the failed marriage, Ali said “She wouldn’t do what she was supposed to do. She wore lipstick; she went into bars; she dressed in clothes that were revealing and didn’t look right.”.

Ali got married for the second time to a 17-year-old girl named Belinda Boyd on August 17, 1967. Soon after the wedding, Belinda got converted to Islam, just like Ali. She officially changed her name to Khalilah Ali. Together they had four children. Maryum (born 1968), twins Jamillah and Rasheda (born 1970), and Muhammad Ali Jr. (born 1972).

Ali was still married to Khalilah Ali when he began an illicit extramarital affair with a 16-year-old, Wanda Bolton. They together had a daughter named Khaliah (born 1974). Wanda Bolton subsequently changed her name to Aaisha Ali. Muhammad Ali married Aaisha Ali as per Islamic rituals, but their marriage was legally not recognized as he was still married to Khalilah Ali (Belinda Boyd). Ali had fathered another daughter, Miya (born 1972), from an extramarital affair with Patricia Harvell.

In 1977, Muhammad Ali and Khalilah Ali got divorced. At this time, Ali was openly seen in public with his girlfriend, Veronica Porché, who became his third wife. At the time of their marriage, they already had a baby girl named Hana, and Veronica was pregnant with their second child, Laila Ali. Laila went on to follow Muhammad Ali footsteps and became a boxing champion, and remained undefeated throughout her career. Veronica Porché and Muhammad Ali separated in 1986.

On November 19, 1986, Muhammad Ali married his fourth and final wife, Yolanda (“Lonnie”) Williams. Ali and Lonnie had been friends since 1964. Ali was 21 years old and Lonnie was six years old when they first met. Their mothers lived on the same street in Louisville and were best friends. After their marriage, they decided to adopt a five-month-old son, Asaad Amin. They remained married until Muhammad Ali’s death in the year 2016.

Muhammad Ali Net Worth

By the time, Muhammad Ali retired, his total fight purse earnings were estimated to be approximately $70 million. However, in 1978, Ali confessed that he is broke and analysts scrutinized his net worth to be around $3.5 million. Analyst determined several factors that led to a decline in his wealth, like taxes which accounted for nearly half his income and the management that took a third of his income. The rest of the money he spent on his lavish lifestyle, on his family, religion, and charities.

In 2005, Muhammad Ali sold the rights to his name and image to Robert Sillerman for $50 million. After his death, his total wealth was evaluated to be around $60 to $80 million.


Muhammad Ali was known for being a humanitarian and devoted much of his time to philanthropy, especially after his retirement. He focused on charities and good deeds as he considered it his Islamic duty. Over the years, he donated millions to charity organizations and disadvantaged people from all religious backgrounds. He supported the Special Olympics and the Make-A-Wish Foundation, among many other organizations. It has been determined that Ali helped feed over 22 million people afflicted by hunger, across the entire world.

Ali’s work as a humanitarian and philanthropist knows no boundaries.

In 1974, Ali visited South Lebanon and declared his “support for the Palestinian struggle to liberate their homeland.”

After his loss to Leon Spinks in 1978, Ali went to Bangladesh where he was presented with an honorary citizenship. The same year, Ali participated in “The Longest Walk”, which was a protest march in the United States in support of Native American rights.

In 1989, Ali visited India, for a charity event for the Muslim Educational Society, along with the Bollywood actor, Dilip Kumar.

An year later, he traveled to Iraq, to meet Saddam Hussein, in an attempt to negotiate the freedom of American hostages, which Saddam willingly allowed.

In 1994, Ali appealed to the United States government to aid the refugees afflicted by the Rwandan genocide and also to donate towards the organizations that were helping Rwandan refugees.

Later in 1996, Ali had the honor to lit the Olympic cauldron at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia.

In 1998, Ali collaborated with the actor, Michael J Fox, to raise awareness and fund research for the study and find a cure for Parkinson’s disease.

In November 2002, Ali was elected by U.N. as their “messenger of peace” and was sent to Afghanistan for a three-day goodwill mission.

In 2012, he was presented the “Philadelphia Liberty Medal” in honor of his lifetime efforts in activism, philanthropy, and humanitarianism.

Parkinson’s Disease

In the year 1984, Muhammad Ali announced that he has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, a condition in which parts of the brain become progressively damaged over the years. Ali remained positive and active during his progression with Parkinson’s disease and the onset of spinal stenosis. He established and inaugurated Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center in Phoenix, Arizona and raised funds for the same to create awareness and to find the cure. Just a few years before his death, Ali underwent surgery for spinal stenosis, a condition that was responsible for limiting his mobility and restricting his ability to communicate.

Muhammad Ali Death & Memorial

Muhammad Ali was admitted in hospital for a mild case of pneumonia on On December 20, 2014. He was once again admitted to hospital on January 15, 2015, for a severe urinary tract infection, but was released the next day.

On June 2, 2016, Ali was again hospitalized in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Arizona, due to respiratory illness. His condition was initially described as “not serious”, but it worsened over a few hours. Muhammad Ali passed away the next day in the hospital on June 3, 3016. At the age of 74.

Muhammad Ali along with Dr. Timothy J. Gianotti and other Islamic scholars had preplanned his memorial many years prior to his death. In Ali’s words, he wanted to be “inclusive of everyone, where we give as many people an opportunity that wants to pay their respects to me”.

The memorial service commenced in Louisville on June 9, 2016, with an Islamic Janazah prayer service, at the Kentucky Exposition Center.

On June 10, 2016, the funeral procession traveled around 20 miles in the streets of Louisville, Kentucky, passing by Muhammad Ali’s childhood home, his school, his first gym, and the Muhammad Ali Boulevard. Thousands of people gathered on the streets and tossed flowers on to his hearse and cheered his name. The procession ended at Cave Hill Cemetery, where Ali was interred in a private ceremony including only his family and friends.

Later in the day, a public memorial service was held at Louisville’s KFC Yum! Center. The pallbearers included Will Smith, Lennox Lewis, Mike Tyson, George Chuvalo, Larry Holmes and George Foreman. Over 20,000 people attended the memorial service, and an estimated 1 billion viewers across the world watched the broadcast.

Religious leaders of various faiths, along with Attallah Shabazz, Bryant Gumbel, former President Bill Clinton, Billy Crystal were the chief speakers. Muhammad Ali’s daughters Maryum and Rasheda and widow Lonnie Williams also spoke at the memorial service.

Lonnie said, “Muhammad indicated that when the end came for him, he wanted us to use his life and his death as a teaching moment for young people, for his country and for the world. She added “In effect, he wanted us to remind people who are suffering that he had seen the face of injustice. That he grew up during segregation, and that during his early life he was not free to be who he wanted to be. But he never became embittered enough to quit or to engage in violence.”

Muhammad Ali, nicknamed “The Greatest”, was not only the best at his athletic skills, but he also showed the world, his courage to stand up against any challenges (whether political or social) and his willingness to speak his mind. He will always be remembered as the best boxing champion, there ever was.

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Walt Disney Biography

Posted On March 1st, 2016 By Celebrity Biographies

Walt Disney Biography

Walt Disney

Walt Disney was an American entrepreneur, motion picture and television producer, cartoonist, animator and a voice actor. His contributions to the entertainment industry, in the 20th century, is unparalleled. He is known throughout the world and is regarded as the cultural icon in the animation industry. He along with his brother co-founded the famous “The Walt Disney Company” and also created the “Disneyland”.

Walter Elias “Walt” Disney was born on December 5, 1901, at 2156 North Tripp Avenue in Hermosa section of Chicago, Illinois. He was born to Elias Charles Disney, who was Irish-Canadian, and Flora Call Disney, who was of German-English descent. Elias married Flora on January 1, 1888, in the place called Acron in Florida. It’s located roughly 40 miles from where Walt Disney World was later developed. Walter was one of five children. He had three brothers and a sister. He lived most of childhood in Marceline, Missouri. It was here that he developed an interest for drawings and paintings, mostly inspired by his neighbor’s horse called Rupert. Walter also developed an interest for trains soon after, as his uncle Mike Martin was an engineer with the railroad and his route included going through Marceline, where he would signal Walter and his brother, either by waving or by a long train whistle, followed by two short ones. Hearing the signal the two brothers would run to a high ground and watch the train go by.

Walt Disney and his younger sister Ruth joined the new Park School of Marceline in the year 1990. However, in the year 1911, the family had to move to Kansas City where Walt and sister Ruth joined the Benton Grammar School at 3004 Benton Boulevard. It was at this school that he met Walter Pfeiffer, who came from the family of theater experts. He introduced Walt to the world of vaudeville (which is a performance made up of a series of separate, unrelated acts grouped together on a common bill, a popular genre from 1880 to 1930’s.) and to motion pictures. Soon Walter was spending a lot of time at Pfeiffer’s house and at Kansas City Art Institute. In July 1911, Walt’s father Elias bought a paper route for “The Kansas City Star”. Walt and his brother Roy took the responsibility of delivering the newspapers. The duo delivered the morning newspaper called the Kansas City Times to over 700 people and then delivered the evening edition to 600 people. Walt would wake up at 4:30 A.M. and would deliver the newspapers till the school bells rang. Then he would distribute the evening edition since 4 P.M. right up till supper. He used to get so exhausted that he often slept in his class and his grades dropped drastically. He continued delivering newspapers for nearly six years and then his family moved to Chicago in 1917. Here Walt attended the McKinley High School and took the night classes at Chicago Academy of Fine Arts. He became a contributing cartoonist for his school paper, drawing patriotic subjects from World War I. When he was 16, he dropped school, in hopes of joining the army, but he was rejected on grounds of being underage. So Walt joined Red Cross instead, and soon he was sent to France where he drove an ambulance for a year. In 1919, Walt came back to Kansas in search of a job. But nobody hired him either as an ambulance driver or a cartoonist. His elder brother Roy, who was working at a local bank at that time, got him a temporary job at Pesmen-Rubin Art Studio. Here he met the cartoonist Ubbe Iwerks, and soon the idea of starting their own company came into being. They opened the company called “Iwerks-Disney Commercial Artists” but it was short lived and soon Walt has to leave it, to temporarily work at Kansas City Film Ad Company, in order to earn some money. He started making cutout animation based commercials here and readily became interested in animation. He soon switched to cel animation from cutout animation as it proved to be more efficient for him and decided to open his own animation business from there.

Walt Disney recruited a co-worker from Film Ad Company, named Fred Harman, as his first employee. Together they created modernized fairy tale cartoons called Laugh-O-Grams. These cartoons became immensely popular because of which Walt was able to purchase his own studio which he named as Laugh-O-Grams. He hired few more artists and animators for the studio, including Fred Harman’s brother Hugh Harman, Rudolf Ising, and his previous business partner and now a close friend Ubbe Iwerks. They did great initially, with their seven minutes fairy tale acts called Alice in Cartoonland, which consisted of both live performances and animation. However, the studio’s profits were not high enough to pay the high salaries of the staff, leading to unpaid debts and eventual bankruptcy.

Walt and his brother Roy moved to Hollywood, and two months later, they pooled in their money and started a studio. Virginia Davis, who was the star of the Disney’s live-action performances, also moved to Hollywood with her family on special request of Walt Disney. So did his old partner Ubbe Iwerks and family. Here the three began the Disney Brother’s Studio. Walt hired an ink-and-celluloid-paint artist named Lillian Bounds in the year 1925. They fell in love and got married in the same year.

Walt and Roy needed a new distributor for their series called Alice Comedies. So they contacted New York’s distributor Margaret Winkler, who was really keen in this distribution deal. The first episode of the series was called “Alice’s Day At Sea” and was delivered on 26th December 1923. The Disney brothers earned $1500 for it and soon the series Alice Comedies was a reasonable success. However, the idea of live performance and animation started losing popularity and the series ended in 1927. A year before that, Charles Mintz, who was the husband of Margaret Winkler and also the producer, ordered a new series to be produced through Universal Studios through Disney’s Studio. This led to the birth of “Oswald, The Lucky Rabbit”, which was an instant success. Its main character was drawn by Iwerks and the character became a popular figure. In February 1928, Walt Disney went to New York to meet the distributors, in order to negotiate higher fees for producing the Oswald series, but he got shocked to learn that Winkler and husband Mintz stole the rights to Oswald series along with most of Disney’s animators except Iwerks, who refused to switch allegiance.

Disney brothers and Iwerks didn’t lose hope and right away, they started creating a new character, based on a pet mouse that Walt adopted while working in Laugh-O-Grams studio in Kansas City. Walt and Roy, and their wives and Iwerks soon produced three new cartoons with it’s the main character called “Mickey Mouse“. All of Disney’s shorts were silent movies and the first short featuring Mickey Mouse was no different. It was called “Plane Crazy”, but Disney was unable to get any distributor for this short. So he produced another one called “The Gallopin’ Gaucho”, however that suffered the same fate as well. Not disheartened, Disney produced third short featuring Mickey, which was called “Steamboat Willie”. This time, however, it was not a silent movie. A businessman, Pat Powers saw the potential and agreed on taking the distribution. He also provided Disney with a Cinephone, which is a sound synchronization process. Soon his short Steamboat Willie became a big success.Disney applied the same tricks to his previous two Mickey’s shorts and those two shorts became a success as well. In the early 1930’s, Mickey Mouse overtook Felix, The Cat, as the most beloved cartoon character.

Walt Disney released a new musical shorts series in the year 1929, called the Silly Symphonies. It was entirely drawn and animated by Iwerks and the series became successful as well. At this time, however, Walt thought that he was not getting a good share of profits from Pat Powers, so in 1930, he signed a new deal with production house “Columbia Pictures”. By the year 1932, Mickey Mouse became a very popular character but Silly Symphonies started witnessing downfall in popularity. It was also the time when Mickey Mouse had a rival competition in Max Fleischer’s cartoon character Betty Boop which was being admired by theater audiences. In April 1931, Columbia Pictures dropped the distribution of Disney’s shorts but “United Artists” took in that job soon. In 1932, Herbert Kalmus completed his work on the first three-strip Technicolor movie camera. He got Disney interested in technicolor and soon Disney re-shot a black and white short of his in technicolor called “Flowers and Trees”. It became a super hit and went on to get it’s Academy Award for Best Short Subject: Cartoons. Soon, all Silly Symphonies cartoons were in color. Walt struck a deal with Technicolor for five years that he would have the sole rights to use the three-strip Technicolor process. In 1933, Disney created his most successful cartoon short of all time, labeled “The Three Little Pigs”. It’s song “Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?” went on to become the anthem during the Great Depression. The cartoon ran for months in the theaters and soon Disney realized that the reason behind such a big success was the strong, emotionally gripping storyline in the cartoon. So he opened a “story department” in his studio, separate from his animators, who focused on building and developing great stories for the shorts production.

In November 1932, Walt Disney was awarded a special award for the creation of Mickey Mouse. Soon, the series was switched to color and all the supporting characters in the series like Donald Duck, Goofy, Minnie Mouse, Pluto came into existence. Donald Duck went on to become Disney’s second most popular and successful cartoon. On 21st December 1937, Disney released “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” which was premiered in Los Angeles and was the first full length animated movie in America, made in color with Disney’s quality expectations. It instantly became a huge success in the theaters earning over $8 million on its release. The movie earned Walt Disney a total of 8 Oscars and thus began what people called “The Golden Age of Animation” for the studio.

Walt Disney was able to open a new campus for the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank on December 24, 1939. While the Feature Animation staff worked on full-length feature projects like Pinocchio, Fantasia, Bambi, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, and Wind in the Willows, the short staff kept working on shorts for Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy and Pluto series. Disney’s animator, Fred Moore had to redesign Mickey Mouse during this period, as Donald Duck overtook Mickey in popularity charts. In 1940, they released Pinocchio and Fantasia, but both the movies failed and were financial setbacks for the studio. They tried to bounce back with an inexpensive feature called Dumbo, but during this period, Disney’s staff went on strike resulting in a major setback for the company. During the World War II, they released Bambi, but it also failed to perform. However, Disney re-issued Snow White in 1944 which was successful and resulted in his seven-year re-release tradition. After the war, Disney studio was able to recover enough to launch their feature animated movies Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland. At this time though, Disney Studios shorts were losing popularity as people had a new favorite cartoon character called Bugs Bunny. But at the same time, Donald Duck’s popularity also rose making it replace Mickey Mouse as Disney’s star cartoon character.

Walt Disney once again paid attention on full length animated features and release Cinderella in the year 1950. At the same time, the also released a live-action film called Treasure Island. This was followed by the seven year reissue of “Alice in Wonderland” in 1951, “Peter Pan” in the year 1953, “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” in 1954, “Lady and the Tramp” in 1955, “Old Yeller” in 1957, “The Shaggy Dog” and “Sleeping Beauty” in 1959, “Pollyanna” “Swiss Family Robinson” in 1960, “The Absent-Minded Professor” “The Parent Trap”, “Babes in Toyland” “101 Dalmatians” in 1961 and Son of Flubber in 1963. “Mary Poppins” in 1964 was last major success that he produced himself.

Walt Disney used television media to great extent as well. His miniseries on Davy Crockett was a big hit. In 1955, when they started airing a new daily show called “The Mickey Mouse Club”, it was an instant hit with the children of all age. The show aired in various formats on TV until the late 90’s.

On a business trip to Chicago in the 40’s, Walt Disney got inspired for an amusement park. He began drawing sketches of his concepts and ideas. He envisioned this park to be a place where children could meet Disney’s employees. This concept later developed into a larger concept that would become Disneyland. Walt Disney spent 5 years into developing his amusement park. Disneyland finally opened on July 17, 1955, in Anaheim, California and in his speech, Disney said “To all who come to this happy place; welcome. Disneyland is your land. Here age relives fond memories of the past … and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams and the hard facts that have created America … with the hope that it will be a source of joy and inspiration to all the world”. He described the area of Fantasyland as “Fantasyland is dedicated to the young and the young in heart, to those who believe when you wish upon a star, your dreams come true.”

Disneyland became a huge success. Children along with families would come, enjoy rides, explore the park and meet the Disney’s cartoon characters. The business boomed in a very short time as Disneyland became a tourist attraction site mesmerizing many from around the world. Disneyland spread its operations and new Disney World was opened up in Orlando, Florida. It was way bigger than Disneyland and again a success. Till date, Disneyland has branched out and opened it’s operations globally in major cities of Paris, Hong Kong, and Tokyo with Shanghai’s Disneyland to be launched in June 2016.

By the year 1960, Walt Disney and his empire was a major success. His company Walt Disney Productions was a household name and it became the major producer of family entertainment.

Walt Disney was a chain smoker throughout his adulthood, however, he made sure never to be seen smoking in front of children. He was working on his plans for “Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow” (EPCOT, in short), which was to be built in heart of the Disney World in Orlando. It was then that he discovered that he had lung cancer. 10 days past his 65th birthday, on December 15, 1966, Walter Elias Disney, died of circulatory collapse which was caused by lung cancer. He was also working on “The Jungle Book” before his death.

After Walt Disney’s death, his elder brother Roy Disney came out of retirement and took control of Walt Disney Productions and The WED Enterprises. At the inauguration of Walt Disney World Resort in the year 1971, Roy Disney said in his speech “Walt Disney World is a tribute to the philosophy and life of Walter Elias Disney…and to the talents, the dedication, and the loyalty of the entire Disney organization that made Walt Disney’s dream come true. May Walt Disney World bring Joy and Inspiration and New Knowledge to all who come to this happy place… the Magic Kingdom where the young at heart of all ages can laugh and play and learn—together.”

Walt Disney left behind a colossal legacy including numerous shorts and feature films, theme parks, an animation company, California Institute of Arts (CalArts) and not to forget the inspirations for millions of people to follow.

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Lata Mangeshkar Biography

Posted On June 13th, 2015 By Celebrity Biographies

Lata Mangeshkar Biography

Lata Mangeshkar

Lata Mangeshkar better known as “Nightingale of India” is one of the most respected playback singers in India. She started her singing career in the year 1942 and the glorious journey of hers still continues. Lata Mangeshkar even received the Bharat Ratna Award, which is India’s highest civilian honor, in the year 2001 for her priceless contribution to the music industry for more than half a dozen decades.

Born on September 28, 1929, Lata Mangeshkar is the daughter of Pandit Deenanath Mangeshkar who was a theater actor and classical singer and to mother Shevanti also known as Shudhamati, who was Deenanath’s second wife. Initially, Deenanath’s family name was Hardikar but he later changed it to Mangeshkar, to identify themselves with their native town of Mangeshi, in Goa, India. Lata Mangeshkar’s parents originally named her “Hema” but after playing the famous character of “Latika” in her father’s play “Bhaaw Bhandhan” she was later addressed as “Lata”. She is the eldest of all her siblings followed by Meena, Asha, Usha and Hridaynath in that order.

Lata Mangeshkar took her early lessons from her father. She started singing from a tender age of 5. She gained the knowledge of music from the most renowned singers of that time, like Aman Ali Khan Sahib and Amanat Khan and later from Pandit Tulsidas Sharma. Lata Mangeshkar’s father died of a heart disease when she was just 13 years old. After his death, Master Vinayak (Vinayak Damodar Karnataki), the owner of Navyug Chitrapat movie company and a close friend of Mangeshkar family helped Lata get started with her singing and acting career.  In the year 1942, Vinayak gave her a small role in Navyug Chitrapat’s Marathi movie “Pahili Mangalaa-gaur“.  In that movie, Lata san a song composed by Dada Chandekar, called “Natali Chaitraachi Navalaai”. However her first Hindi song “Mata Ek Sapoot Ki Duniya Badal De Tu” was in year 1943, in a Marathi movie called “Gajaabhaau“.

It was in the year 1945, that Lata Mageshkar moved to Mumbai, and started taking Hindustani classical lessons from Ustaad Amanat Ali Khan. However following the partition of India, Amanat Ali Khan migrated to Pakistan, so it was not viable to take any more lessons from him. So she continued her lessons under the guidance of Amanat Khan Devaswale and Pandit Tulsidas Sharma. Master Vinayak passed away in 1948 and the music director Ghulam Haider mentored her as a singer and gave her first major break with the song “Dil Mera Toda, Mujhe Kahin Ka Na Chhora” from the movie “Majboor”. This was after, when Lata Mangeshkar was rejected by producer Sashadhar Mukherjee who was then working on the movie “Shaheed” and he cited the reason for rejection that her voice is “too thin”. Agitated Ghulam Haider claimed that one day, producers and directors will fall on Lata’s feet and beg her to sing in their movies. Even in the year 2013, Lata Mangeshkar said that “Ghulam Haider is truly my Godfather. He was the first music director who showed complete faith in my talent.” In the year 1949, Lata Mangeshkar gave her first first major hit with the song “Aayega Aanewaala”, in the movie “Mahal”. The song was composed by music director Khemchand Prakash and lip-synced on screen by the very beautiful and talented actress “Madhubala”. After that, Lata Mangeshkar became a sensation and Ghulam Haider’s words came true. Everyone wanted Lata to sing for their movies. She has worked with the biggest music directors of India, and sung duets with the best of singers. Lata Mageshkar, in a span of seven decades, has sung songs for over thousand Hindi/Bollywood films and sung in 36 different Indian and foreign languages, although primarily in Hindi and Marathi.

In these glorious seven decades, Lata Mangeshkar was honored by multiple awards including Bharat Ratna (India’s Highest Civilian Award), Padma Bhushan (1969), Padma Vibhushan (1999), Dada Saheb Phalke Award (1989), Maharashtra Bhushan Award (1997), NTR National Award (1999), ANR National Award (2009), Three National Film Awards, and 12 Bengal Film Journalists’ Association Awards and 4 Filmfare “Best Female Playback Singer” awards. In order to let fresh talent come forward she even gave up her Filmfare Best Female Playback in 1969 which was indeed very unusual gesture. In the year 1993, she was presented with “Lifetime Achievement Award” by Filmfare. The state governments of two Indian states “Madhya Pradesh” and “Maharasthra” have instituted a Lata Mangeshkar Award in honor of Lata Mangeshkar.

All has not been so well in her life though. Padma Sachdev who used to regularly visit Lata’s recordings revealed in her book named “Aisa Kahan Se Laaoon” about a very sad incident where Lata was being given slow poison in the year 1962, which deteriorated her health and she was bed-ridden for 3 months. It was a close brush with death as she became very weak due to this incident. The cook who used to work at home, suddenly left after this incident, without taking wages. It is said that this cook used to work with some influential people of Bollywood back in the days. Perhaps, the success of Lata Mangeshkar was too much to handle for some competitor and they took such a step. Bollywood famous lyricist “Majrooh Sultanpuri”, used to visit Lata at her home on daily basis. He used to taste the food first and only examining it, he used to let Lata eat that food. He would then recite poems and stories to her to keep her in good spirits by humor.

In the year 1974, The Guinness Book of Records listed Lata Mangeshkar as the most recorded artist in the history, stating that she had reportedly recorded “not less than 25,000 solo, duet and chorus backed songs in 20 Indian languages” between 1948 and 1974. i.e. 25,000 songs in a span of 26 years. Some claimed that she has sung somewhere around 50,000 songs in her singing career but many believe it was exaggerated. This entry was later removed from The Guinness Book of Records due to lack of any documentary proof. The total proven recorded songs came out to be 5025 by the year 1991. To this Lata Mangeshkar herself stated that she does not keep a record of the number of songs recorded by her, and that she did not know from where Guinness Book editors got their information from. At present, this record according to The Guinness Book of Records, is held by Lata Mangeshkar’s younger sister, “Asha Bhosle”, who has been credited for recording up to 11,000 solo, duet and chorus-backed songs and in over 20 Indian languages since 1947, which is major feat for any singer.

On 27th January 1963, when India lost to China in the Indo-China war, Lata Mangeshkar sang the patriotic song “Aye Mere Watan Ke Logon Zara Aankh Me Barlo Pani” in the presence of the first Prime Minister of India, “Jawaharlal Nehru”. It is said that she moved him to tears when she sang the song.

Lata Mangeshkar has always been a simple, down to earth, gem of a person. Her trademark white sari draped casually and melodious voice defines the star she is. Apart from music, Lata Mangeshkar is really fond of perfumes and diamonds. She has even earned a privilege of having a permanent gallery reserved for her at Lord’s stadium from where she can enjoy the game of cricket whenever she gets time. She is undoubtedly the queen of playback singing for last seven decades and she has set a benchmark for generations to come. She is truly, “The Nightingale of India”.

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Larry Page Biography

Posted On April 2nd, 2015 By Celebrity Biographies

Larry Page Biography

Larry Page

Larry Page, born as Lawrence Page is an American entrepreneur and a computer scientist. He along with his grad school friend, Sergey Brin, co-founded the Google Inc. in the year 1998. Google of course is the giant search engine which every internet user has heard of. Larry developed a ranking algorithm called PageRank which was used in the Google search results and consider to be one of the major ranking algorithm. Larry is currently the Chief Executive Office (CEO) of Google Inc. and also is the president of Google products and is responsible for Google day to day development and formulating product and services strategies. In a July 2014 issue of Bloomberg Billionaire Index, Larry Page was listed as the 17th richest man in the world with a net worth of $32.7 billion. He was also declared as the “Businessman of the year” in 2014 by Fortune Magazine. Larry Page is also a member of Board of Directors of the company, and has a keen interest in renewable energy and philanthropy. All his efforts has made Google as the most influential company of the digital era.

Early Life & Career

Lawrence Page was born to father Carl Vincent Page Sr. and mother Gloria. He was born on March 26, 1973, in East Lansing, Michingan, Unites States. Carl Page earned a Ph D. in computer science in the year 1965 and is considered as “pioneer of computer science and artificial intelligence”. He was a professor in Michigan State University while mother Gloria was an instructor in computer programming in the Lyman Briggs College in the same university.

With both parents as computer professionals, Larry Page had a keen interest in computers from the age of six. He used to play with the first generation personal computers, lying around in the home, left by his parents. With his elder brother’s help, Larry used to take apart the PC and other things in the home, just to see how it worked. His home was full of computer and science magazines, which increased his fascination for technology, even further. From the very early age, he knew, he wanted to invent things, making him very interested in business and technology. By the age of 12, he was sure of starting a company eventually, in the same field.

Larry studied in Okesmos Montessori School, Michigan from year 1975 and graduated in 1991 from East Lansing High School in Michigan. He pursued a Bachelor of Science degree in computer engineering, with honors, from University of Michigan. He later then enrolled for Master of Science in computer engineering from the Stanford University.

It was during his PhD. in Stanford University that Page was in search of a dissertation theme and considered exploring the mathematical properties of the World Wide Web, understanding its link structure as a huge graph. He completely focused on the problem of finding out which web pages link to a given page, considering the number and nature of such backlinks as valuable information for that page. It was then when he met Sergey Brin, a fellow Stanford University student, who joined Page’s research in 1995 and initially nicknamed this research and search engine as “BackRub”. The search engine was operated on Stanford servers for many many months. The duo of Larry Page and Sergey Brin also published a research paper back then, called “The Anatomy of a Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine”, which till date, is the most downloaded scientific paper of all time. To convert the backlink data gathered by BackRub’s web crawler into a measure of importance for a given web page, Brin and Page developed the ranking algorithm called the PageRank algorithm. They realized that it could be used to build a search engine far superior and advanced than those that existed back then. This new algorithm idea they had, relied on a new kind of parameters that analyzed the relevance of the backlinks that connected one Web page to another. Using their basic HTML programming skills, the duo Brin and Page, created a simple search page for it’s users. As their search engine grew popularity among Stanford users, they needed extra computer parts and servers to handle the necessary computing power to process the multiple queries. It was in 1996 that the initial version of Google (running still on Stanford servers) was made available to internet users.

The duo, called the search engine as “Google” which was derived from the mathematical term “Googol”, a term used for number 1 followed by 100 zeroes. It was to reflect their mission to organize the vast amount of data, their search engine was meant to explore on the web.

Larry Page and Sergey Brin, now saw the prospect in this project and decided to incorporate a company. Andy Bechtolsheim, co-founder of Sun Microsystems, wrote them a check of $100,00 to Google Inc., a company which was yet to come into existence. Raising a million dollar from family, friends and investors, Google Inc. was launched in September 1998. By the start of 2000, Google inc. office moved to the famous Mountain view office in heart of California’s silicon valley. Within months, Google had indexed more than one billion web pages on the web, making it the most comprehensive search engines of that time.

In 2001, Google Inc. hired Eric Schmidt as the CEO of the company while Larry page became the president of Google products and Sergey Brin became president of Google technology. Later in August 2004, Google Inc. held it’s first Intital Public Offering (IPO) which made both Larry Page and Sergey Brin, billionaires at the age of 30. In the same year, Google.org was found, which is the philanthropic wing of Google. They donate $100,000,000 each year, as on now, contributing towards challenging social issues and causes like global hunger and poverty.

In the year 2005, Larry Page led the acquisition of Android operating system for $50 million as his dreams was to enable every handheld computer users, so that they can access to Google search engine from anywhere. Larry page became passionate about the Android system and started to spend lot of time and effort into it. By 2010, Android became a market leader and one of the most popular operating system used on cell phones.

In April 2011, Larry Page officially became CEO of Google Inc. while Eric Schmidt stepped down to serve as the executive chairman of the company. As the new CEO of the company, his new goals were plain and simple. They were the development of greater autonomy for the executives overseeing the most important divisions, and higher levels of collaboration, communication and unity among the teams. He also declared a “zero tolerance for fighting” policy. By March 2013, at least 70 Google products and services were completely shutdown, while the remaining ones were unified on basis of appearance and nature. Larry started a project code-named “Kennedy” which was a project of “designing and developing a true UI framework that transforms Google’s application software into a beautiful, mature, accessible and consistent platform for its users.” All the remaining products were thus aligned with Larry Page’s aim of suite of products that can move fast. “Kennedy” project was a design revolution.

Larry Page has also ventured into computer hardware, with Google unveiling Chromebook laptop in May 2012. This laptop ran on Google’s own operating system called Chrome OS. He also is an investor with Tesla Motors. With a keen interest in renewable energy technology, Page promotes adoption of hybrid electric cars and other source of energy investments.

Awards and Achievements

in 1999, PC Magazine awarded Google, the Technical Excellence Award for innovation in web application development.

In the year 2002, Larry Page was named a “World Economic Forum Leader For Tomorrow” and jointly with Sergey Brin, was named by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)’s Technological Review Publication as one of the top 100 innovators of the world, under the age of 35. The list then was called TR100 but the name has now been changed to TR35.

In 2003, Larry Page received a MBA from IE Business School, in an honorary capacity, “for embodying the entrepreneurial spirit and lending momentum to the creation of new businesses.”

In the year 2004, Larry Page and Sergey Brin received the prestigious Marconi’s Foundation Prize, which is given to honour significant contributions in science and technology. They were also elected Fellow of the Marconi Foundation at Columbia University.

Again in 2004, Larry Page was chosen as a trustee of X PRIZE board and he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering.

In 2005, Both. Brin and Page were elected as Fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

In the year 2009, Larry Page received an honorary doctorate from the University of Michigan, during a graduation commencement ceremony.

Personal Life

Larry Page married Lucinda Southworth on Necker Island in the year 2007. Southworth is a research scientist by profession. She is the sister of actress and model Carrie Southworth. Larry Page and Southworth have two children, born in the year 2009 and 2011. Larry’s brother Carl Page Jr. is also an internet entrepreneur.

ALTHOUGH larry Page applied for the PhD in Stanford University, but he never got to complete it because of his business ventures, followed by Google’s responsibilities.

In 2014, Page was declared as the most daring CEO and the Businessman of the year by the Fortune magazine.

As Google’s Chief Executive Officer, Larry Page plans to make Google “a big company that has the nimbleness and soul and passion of a start-up.”

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