40 People Naturalized at Colorado National Monument
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.- Tuesday was a joyous day on top of the Colorado National Monument for 40 new citizens, as they made their last step in a long journey to become an official American.
Usually, local naturalization ceremonies are held in a federal court building in downtown Grand Junction, but for the first time, the local tourist attraction hosted the special event.
“What's great about this is each story is individual,” said Andy Lambrecht, field office director with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Each may have taken a different path to get to America, but this group of people, from 20 different countries, share one special thing in common on this Constitution Day: an oath of citizenship.
“I think America means, just a lot of opportunities. A lot of equal opportunities for everyone,” said Dania Davison, new citizen.
Davison is one of many who can now legally call America her home.
Born in Mexico, Davison says the struggle to citizenship was no small task and that she couldn't have made this happen without the help from her kids.
“They were the ones that sat with me and studied,” said Davison. “They made sure I was getting everything right. They’re so excited and it’s a piece of mind for these guys right here, that I became a citizen.”
With flags in hands and some tears on their faces, these newly appointed citizens remember back to the tests they had to take, and obstacles they had to overcome.
“I’m so proud,” said Allen Prinster, new citizen. “I am so proud that I was able to fulfill my American dream.”
“They had to take an extra step in order to apply to become citizens. It’s not mandatory. It’s not automatic,” said Lambrecht.
Officials say throughout the state of Colorado, nearly 6,500 people are made citizens every year.