On Sunday, Nov. 17, two bona fide legends will converge on Orlando for the first time since 1997. Billie Jean King and Sir Elton John are co-hosts of Mylan World Team Tennis Smash Hits, an all-star charity featuring tennis stars Venus Williams, Andy Roddick, Marion Bartoli, John Isner and more. The event, at beautiful HP Field House at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World, benefits the Elton John AIDS Foundation and the Hope and Help Center of Central Florida. Smash Hits fundraisers have raised more than $11.5 million for HIV/AIDS charities around the nation.
I spoke with King prior to the 1997 Smash Hits event and found her warm, witty and accessible. We spoke again by telephone earlier this month and picked up right where we left off 16 years ago. As you’ll see below, it was much more a conversation than an interview; I left out all the parts where she asked about my family, the newspaper, my life. It was easy to forget that she is an icon, named one of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th Century by Life Magazine.
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