Vernon Forrest, Boxer and Champion for Kids, Killed

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Vernon Forrest, a former world welterweight and junior middleweight boxing champion who was shot to death during a robbery in Atlanta in July, was the founder of Destiny’s Child, which provides residential services for the mentally disabled in the Atlanta area.

Forrest, who upset Shane Mosley in 2002 and was a member of the 1992 U.S. Olympic boxing team, founded Destiny’s Child in 1998 and maintained an active role in running the company, which now has 11 group homes for youth and adults with emotional and psychological disabilities and provides them with 24-hour supervision.

Forrest, 38, once said he was motivated to start Destiny’s Child after watching an autistic child struggle to tie a shoe, making him realize the insignificance of many of life’s other problems.

After his second victory over Mosley in 2002, Forrest ran into the stands to hug a group of Destiny’s Child residents he had taken to the fight. Forrest also worked with kids through the Atlanta Police Athletic League and coached at a local recreation center.

Atlanta police have arrested three suspects, including a 30-year-old man, who they believe robbed Forrest of his championship ring while he was stopped at a gas station and then gunned him down after Forrest chased and exchanged gunfire with him.