Photographer Stephen Miller Remembered

The Chapman Wordweavers Society released balloons and paid tribute to local avid outdoors-man and wildlife photographer Stephen F. Miller Jr on Thursday,.

Three years ago, Stephen Miller joined the Chapman Wordweavers Society writing group. He and the other members quickly went from acquaintances and former school mates to friends, best friends — and then an inseparable little family. The group meets weekly on Tuesday evenings at the Renovo Public Library.

Balloon release at the Chapman Township Boat Dock. Maureen Ruhl, Glen ‘gLenie n’ Brooks, Terri Hough, Donna Kshir and Stephen Miller.

Unexpectedly on February 11, 2020 the inseparable little writing family received word the little brother of the group was called home to be with the Lord while on a business trip to Washington D.C. This left the close-knit writing family devastated. Completely heartbroken and wanting to honor their little brother, but with Covid 19 and restrictions placed in order by Governor Tom Wolf their plans were temporarily put on hold.

Thursday, April 8, was a beautiful and sunny day at the North Bend Boat Dock in Chapman Township. On arrival, the writing group members Terri Hough, Glen Brooks, Maureen Ruhl and Donna Kshir knew it was going to be a day of mixed emotions. Happy to celebrate their friend’s life, but at the same time heartbroken of his loss. As they shared memories of Miller they filled multi-colored balloons with helium. The North Bend Boat Dock has great significance to the group. The Chapman Township entryway to the West Branch of the Susquehanna River was one of Stephen’s favorite places to photograph and kayak.

Kshir said,  ‘when we decided to celebrate Stephen’s life there was no question. We knew it had to be at the North Bend boat dock.’

Photographer and author of Waterfalls and Cascades in the Pennsylvnia Wilds, Stephen Miller.

At 1pm the small group took a moment in silence before releasing balloons for Miller. As the balloons rose high above, group member Ruhl said, ‘Fly high Stephen.’ The group stood and watched the balloons fly high into the air until they were out of sight. With tear filled eyes, the group decided this was going to be a yearly event for ‘Stephen.’

Lee Roberts, who currently resides in Crestview, Florida was not there in person but said she was there in spirit.

Before exiting the boat dock, Ruhl read Matthew 17:20. “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” This passage reminded her of ‘Stephen.’

The Chapman Wordweavers Society is an independent group who come together to pursue art, crafts, and the love of writing. The Founders and mentors are bestselling authors and publishers Donna Kshir and Lee Roberts. The duo provides professional support and guidance with all aspects of the creative writing process since 2014. Five members of the group have released books since 2019; Terri Hough, Glen ‘gLenie b’ Brooks, James Roberts, Violet Blossom and Gladys Caroline, as well as a group release, 200 Years: Celebrating Chapman Township, Pennsylvania. Books are available at Walmart, Kmart, Amazon and other online bookstores. 

The writing group will resume meetings once Covid restrictions are lifted.

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