SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A man who panhandled outside an art gallery for years has donated $10,000 to the gallery after inheriting $187,000 US from his long-estranged mother.

The executors of the woman's estate tracked down the man, whom they identified only as Don, a month ago through his Social Security number and with help from local social workers.

One of the first things Don did was show his gratitude to Blue Room Gallery owner Paul Mahder for treating him with respect.

"When I had a heart attack and wound up in the hospital a year ago, who was the only person to visit me? Paul.

"And when I needed a doorway to sleep in over the past couple years, who let me? Paul," Don said. "He treated me like a human being. That's something you don't forget."

Both men burst into tears when Don presented his cheque.