Woman Transforms from Jailed Addict to University Graduate and Looks Unrecognizable

Dayna Remus
Oct 02, 2021
05:50 A.M.
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Ginny Burton was withering away behind bars. Her almost supernatural metamorphosis from jailbird to a walking beacon of hope serves as motivation for those who may be trying to break free from addiction.


University graduate Ginny Burton shared a picture on Instagram of herself looking radiant and relaxed. However, this mother of three wasn't always the picture of health. In May of this year, she chose to share her transformation from a jailed addict to a thriving woman.

In her most recent snapshot, Burton took a selfie while talking about her move to San Diego from Washington with her youngest 15-year-old daughter.

A mugshot of Ginny Burton when she was actively taking drugs with a picture of her graduating in the background. | Source: instagram.com/vginnyburton

A mugshot of Ginny Burton when she was actively taking drugs with a picture of her graduating in the background. | Source: instagram.com/vginnyburton


The mom penned that she was trying to settle down in the city, citing that faith would help her find the right place. This positive mindset wasn't always a part of her life, with the 48-year-old, this last May, sharing snaps of her evolution from a life of drugs to where she is now, part of the description reading:

"Lest I forget my reality, these photos are a constant reminder. I don't ever want to forget."

The picture consists of four separate snaps; the top two are her mug shots, looking worn out and depressed. In the last two, Burton has gone through a complete evolution, looking healthy and with a twinkle in her eyes.


The mother of three wrote about how grateful she was to lead the life she has now, and in no way does she want to turn back to her darker days. However, the recovering addict expanded, stating she still struggles almost every day of the week, dreaming of taking drugs.

Her ex-husband once beat her so severely that it led to an infection in her face, which ate away at her skin.

One of the snaps is of the mother hiking. Burton has stated that this exercise, along with running and cycling, among others, has offered her profound renewal and transformation after her long battle with hard drugs.


Burton went through many traumas; her mother first brought drugs into her life at 7, leading her to become a complete addict at 14. The exercise lover also finished school in 6th grade and had stints in and out of jail.

However, after going through withdrawal in jail, she had an awakening, expressing:

"My problem was me. It wasn’t what my mom did to me, it wasn’t the abuse that I experienced from my husband."

Burton realized it was her own decisions leading her down this turbulent path. In 2012, she got clean, has been sober for nearly a decade, and obtained a degree in political science from the University of Washington.


These stories are lived out by many recovering addicts worldwide, ready to share their awe-inspiring journeys to sobriety. In 2018, ​fitness-addict Jay Maryniak spoke about his twisted relationship with alcohol, crack, and opioids, revealing:

“It started out innocent. It was fun, and then I got addicted.”

From a very young age until he was a teenager, Maryniak went from smoking cigarettes and marijuana to getting hooked on more complex narcotics such as cocaine.


After realizing he had a considerable problem, Maryniak decided to go to rehab and complete the 12-step program. He then began throwing himself into exercise to deal with volatile emotions.

Now, he is a personal trainer who shares workouts online, among other fitness content. As reported in 2018, this renewed man had grown a following on Instagram of just under 200,000.


Addiction is a complex illness and should be treated by mental and healthcare professionals. Nevertheless, there are some easy points that individuals can follow if they want to help a loved one who is struggling with drug dependency.

One helpful course of action is opening them up to listening by continuing to build rapport and trust. Another is to not lie about how their illness is influencing one's own life.

There are also courses of action to avoid, such as criticizing and threatening them, which will ultimately work against the road to recovery. Lastly, although challenging, patience can be beneficial as those who struggle with this monster can not simply change overnight.


The depth of human struggle and their ability to overcome and inspire in the process is vast. It spans many directions beyond just drug dependency: one woman, Saundra Crockett, a victim of domestic violence, turned her life around and has become an inspiration.

Crocket is a beacon of hope to other women who may be finding themselves in similar situations. Her ex-husband once beat her so severely that it led to an infection in her face, which ate away at her skin and was ultimately life-threatening.

Crockett survived with a disfigured face, but ultimately it has been fixed. Just like the strong ex-addicts who managed to conquer their deeply challenging roads, this mother of three also motivates those in grueling contexts to believe in their ability to transform their lives.

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