It was graduation day for some folks who have overcome the odds.
Rochester Drug Court and the Monroe County Mental Health Court honored those who made it through the program successfully.
The goal of the two courts is to break the cycle of addiction and crime so men and women do not become repeat offenders.
Friday, more than 70 program participants graduated from the Adult Drug and Mental Health Treatment Courts. Their progress has been monitored by the drug court team and in front of families and friends, the judges recognized the hard work each of them had to do and overcome to get to the point of graduation.
Judges call Rochester's Drug Court a life-saving crime-reducing program and say 75 percent of graduates do not repeat their crimes.
Beth Coombs is a Rochester Drug Court success story. She was once an addict at 32-years-old and homeless. She finished the program the first year it started in 1997 and now lives in California, owns a home and heads a non-profit organization.
"Those of you graduating today know this has not been an easy road. You've had to learn how to change everything. I came into these places and thought they didn't know what they're talking about. I'm different, I'm better. No, I had to change everything," said Beth Coombs.
This was also Honorable Judge John Schwartz' last graduation ceremony. He is retiring at the end of the year. He was honored for all of his work, especially as founder of the Rochester Drug Court.