Professional wrestler helps feed homeless

By Jason Mealey - Producer/assignment editor

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Elijah Burke is currently a commentator for Total Nonstop Action Wrestling. His character is "The Pope D'Angelo Dinero." His act of kindness on Saturday in Jacksonville is worthy of a pontiff.

Burke fed, clothed and gave hygiene products to the homeless and disadvantaged families through his Love-Alive charity. Burke got emotional while talking about the work.

"You know you're making a difference in somebody's life. It's the smiles. Gosh the smiles on these people's faces when they realize that they are not being fed out of a soup kitchen," Burke said.

This is the fourth year Burke has held the event. Saturday's event took place at the Burger King on East State Street.

"From the heart, my credit card," Burke said with a laugh. "I have some people who believe in this. Individuals have donated and I tell people that a dollar helps. But if I have to come out here and feed these individuals myself out of my pocket, I have no problem doing it," Burke said.

Burke was a deputy with the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office from 1998 to 2003. He was also an amateur boxer. Burke wrestled for World Wrestling Entertainment from 2004 to 2008 and took part in WrestleMania 23. He's worked with TNA Wrestling off-and-on since 2009.

"I am sure a lot of people remember Officer Burke, fighting with Guns and Hoses, putting on a show," Burke said.

Burke says he hasn't forgotten where he came from.

"I grew up here and shopped at Winn-Dixie for years. I ate at this Burger King for years. My old neighborhood right now is under the stadium and the Jacksonville Coliseum. This is home and I always want to give back when I have the opportunity to, and fortunately I have been able to do that," Burke said.


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