By day Denise Miller works with older people who have mental illness at Taylor Care Adult Behavioral Health in Galloway Township.
She’s a case worker in a day program run a bit like a school, she said, with classes in independent living skills, social skills, health issues and a variety of art classes to help people manage and recover from mental illness.
But the lifelong musician and singer-songwriter spends much of her free time writing music and has written a song for her clients titled “I Will See You Again.”
“I’m just inspired by my clients,” said Miller, “their strength and their fragility — the journey they go through. They always get up and keep trying and don’t give up.”
Many of her clients have schizophrenia and first developed symptoms in early adulthood.
“Usually it comes at a time in life, in college, or a first relationship, when they are just getting jobs and just getting married,” said Miller, 61, of Little Egg Harbor Township. “All of a sudden their whole world falls apart and they land in a hospital.”
It’s important to remember people who have mental illness are people first, trying to get back to who they were before the illness, she said.
She said she plays the song for them and they sing along, with lyrics such as “I’m taking it one day at a time, but the road will lead to a bright tomorrow, getting back to the life that was mine.”
She released the tune in February with her son, Jon Miller, a guitarist and bassist who also lives in Little Egg Harbor Township. It’s available on Amazon and iTunes. Miller said many people who are fighting addiction and physical illness have told her the song speaks to their struggles as well.
Miller is also a member of the trio Ladies Night Out, which will play 10 p.m. May 10 at Albert Music Hall in Waretown. To listen to “I Will See You Again,” visit
Microsoft challenge finalist
Laura Beth Fulton, a senior at Egg Harbor Township High School, is one of 20 finalists in the Microsoft YouthSpark Challenge for Change global competition. The five finalists with the most online votes will win, receiving funding for their projects and a volunteer travel experience in the Amazon.
Fulton is asking readers to vote for her once each day through April 22. Vote for “Laura F.” at
. Laura’s project integrates Microsoft technology to help girls enjoy science and explore science, technology and math careers.
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