Formerly Homeless: From cold steps to warm bed

Eah Housing

San Jose, California, March 30, 2017 - William Miller has come a long way since 2013, when he used to sleep on the cold steps of a church in downtown San Jose. Now he has a warm bed in his own apartment at Bella Terra, an EAH Housing development for seniors in Morgan Hill.

“I love every minute of it,” said William, 59. “This building is built on community and respect. We all try to help each other. We are here every day for each other.”

Originally from Lorain, Ohio, William moved to California in his mid-20s looking for work. He has worked many temporary jobs over the years. More recently, as a lead supervisor he led a crew that unloaded trucks for Savers stores, and for Goodwill he managed a trailer drop-off site receiving donations.

But after several serious head injuries caused by accidents, including being hit by a car and falling down a long flight of stairs, William can no longer work. In spite of that, since moving to Bella Terra he has managed to save enough money from his Social Security income, after paying his bills, to buy a used car.

A huge local sports fan, William frequently wears San Francisco Giants shirts and baseball caps. He watches sports on television, especially games featuring the Giants, the San Francisco 49ers and the Golden State Warriors.

Although his injuries used to give him regular headaches, William’s sparing use of medication and stable life at Bella Terra now help him keep the headaches under control. He says life has been hard, but fair.

“You have to make the best of every day,” said William.