that's life (Australia)

Paying it forward


When Carissa Kranz looks back on her childhood, the most prominent memories involve ballet slippers and tutus.

Carissa was in Grade 3 back in 1992 when she started lessons with Miss Joan Miller at the Palm Beach ballet centre.

Miss Joan was an icon on the dancing scene and recognised Carissa’s potential, giving her years of free lessons when Carissa’s mum couldn’t afford the fees.

Carissa went on to get a law degree before she found out Miss Joan had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

‘I saw that the studio was pretty much taken from her and her home was in foreclosur­e,’ Carissa told WPTV.

When Carissa, then 31, found Miss Joan, 74, bedridden in a depressing nursing home in 2015, with no family to advocate for her, she immediatel­y moved her former teacher into her spare bedroom.

Carissa, who runs her own law practice from home, has now been

Miss Joan’s full-time carer for six years.

‘She helped mould me into the person I am today,’ Carissa told the Palm Beach Post.

‘I felt this was my payback to her.’ ●

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