Re: Trevor King... Oz Boxing's Greatest Success Story
King's a hit with hungry
By Miranda Devine
August 4 2002
Nice things happen all over this city every day and more often than not go unnoticed. But Terry O'Riley, 75, a homeless man who who says he sleeps under a bridge at Windsor, rang last week because he didn't want the kind act he witnessed at the McGraths Hill McDonald's to be forgotten.
Like a lot of homeless people, O'Riley says he goes to McDonald's every day because it is safe and warm and you can sit for ages on a cheap cup of coffee. Two weeks ago he saw a hungry man scrounging leftover food from the tables, when another man walked over and gave him the meal he had just bought himself and the jacket off his back. O'Riley recognised the generous benefactor as former Australian featherweight champion Trevor King, and says the boxer didn't have enough cash left to buy himself another hamburger.
"That's just the man he is," said O'Riley, calling from a phone box in Windsor. "I wanted to get on a rooftop and tell everyone about the kindness I saw."
O'Riley, a well-spoken former accountant, has had a lot of sadness in his life, because "drinking and gambling got me - the races and then the poker machines. I had a lovely wife and kids and a lovely home in Elizabeth Bay. But if you keep making the same mistakes people get sick of you eventually".
He has known King, 72, off and on for 40 years, since he was a boxing fan and King was a champion. Now King runs the Westside Mission for alcoholics and drug addicts in Ebenezer, where O'Riley has dried out a couple of times.
Whatever demons O'Riley lives with keep sending him back to drink and the Windsor Bridge remains his only home. But he sees the good in the world with a clarity that people with easier lives often miss.
"It's a beautiful world," he says, without irony.