For every school student, graduation is an accomplishment that marks a milestone in life. For Carl Umlauf and Clinton Reid, their recent graduation from Drug Court was perhaps the biggest sobriety milestone they have achieved so far.
With friends, family, and well-wishers packed into a Codington County courtroom, Umlauf’s and Reid’s graduation marked a new chapter in their lives free from the substance abuse demons they’ve battled, and generally succumbed to, for years. Their addictions have been ones that have alienated their friends and families and left them in a despondent state.
As one of nine members of the Drug Court Team, Third Judicial Circuit Court Judge Carmen Means has seen the perils of how addiction affects the people who appear before her.
“Addiction is a slog and it’s difficult,” Means told the Watertown Public Opinion in the minutes after Umlauf’s and Reid’s graduation.
The Drug Court Team includes those in the legal, law enforcement and counseling communities.
Through the rigorous and voluntary multi-year process of Drug Court, the two men reclaimed their lives and controlled their demons to once again emerge as productive members of society.
Read the full story at the Brookings Register.