"I loved that man": Paul McCartney recalls the wonderful friendship he shared with Muhammad Ali

The Beatles first met the boxer in February 1964

"I loved that man": Paul McCartney recalls the wonderful friendship he shared with Muhammad Ali

/ AP/Press Association Images

Muhammad Ali's legacy is being enjoyed by many as we continue to process the news that one of boxing's most iconic figures has passed away.

The deluge of tributes and farewell messages continue to pour in, and among them is musical legend Paul McCartney. 

McCartney and Ali first met in February 1964, the year that the latter captured his first of three heavyweight titles. And to commemorate his memory, the Beatles bassist penned a candid tribute message to Ali.

On his website, he wrote:

"Dear Muhammad Ali. I loved that man."

"He was great from the first day we met him in Miami, and on the numerous occasions when I ran into him over the years. Besides being the greatest boxer, he was a beautiful, gentle man with a great sense of humour who would often pull a pack of cards out of his pocket, no matter how posh the occasion, and do a card trick for you."

"The world has lost a truly great man."

The photo placed above the message depicts a meeting between Ali and the British rock band in Miami in February of 1964, before the music group made their second appearance on the Ed Sullivan show.

Ringo Starr also expressed his sympathies on Friday night with a tweet to Ali's family.