To the family?s rescue
By ED SOUTHORN
ADRIAN Maher is the "white knight" who rescued the family home of Banora Point electrician John Duyker from a controversial bankruptcy auction.
Mr Maher, 82, retired 10 years ago to his Coolangatta hilltop mansion after almost 40 years running AJ Maher Real Estate.
He said yesterday he could not just sit back and do nothing when he became aware of the dramatic home eviction of Mr Duyker and his three young sons.
"I felt terribly sorry for him," Mr Maher said, after police dragged the crying and screaming Duyker family out to the street last September.
The eviction was the climax to an extraordinary debt dispute with bankruptcy authorities.
Mr Duyker was bankrupted after contesting a solicitor's fee over his divorce, which led to an inexplicable tax bill due to his role as a co-director of the failed South Tweed Rugby League Football Club.
Mr Maher has loaned Mr Duyker $165,000 in a very generous arrangement.
"It's a very confusing situation and it's a bit hard on John for anyone to say he brought it on himself," Mr Maher said.
"He's just got the biggest heart. He's got three chldren he loves to death and God has been good to me, so why not share it around."
Mr Maher has had three heart operations. Like Mr Duyker, he loves his family dearly.
Mr Duyker, who stayed with friends after he was evicted, said it was hard to express how grateful and relieved he felt thanks to Mr Maher's generosity.
He said it was wonderful to be back at home. "It's been a long hard struggle."