Military members, family become U.S. citizens

GROTON, Conn. (WTNH) — A special ceremony at the submarine base in Groton naturalized 19 new citizens Friday.

The new U.S. citizens, military members and their families, have already proven they are dedicated to this country. They hail from 16 countries, including Brazil, China, Poland, and Panama. That’s where Marine Corporal Aizar Bula is from.

“It’s definitely a great feeling,” he said. “Before the day approached it didn’t seem like a big deal, but today is definitely different.”

Many are now excited to start their new lives as U.S. citizens.

“I’m so happy for it,” said Li Jiang. “I’ve waited for a long time.”

Jiang’s husband, Staff Sergeant Zhi Wu, was naturalized a few years ago.

“I’m proud of her,” he said. “We are looking forward to contributing to society.”

“It is so important to all of us to see what you’re doing and to understand the example you are providing for all of us,” said Congressman Joe Courtney.

“I think it’s a dream come true, everyone’s dream come true,” said new citizen Carmen Chanchavac. “It’s an honor to be wearing this uniform, be part of this.”

Fittingly, the ceremony takes place during Military Appreciation Month. With Memorial Day coming on Monday, this is certainly a time to honor those who have served and sacrificed.

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