Welcoming new citizens

Published Sep 18, 2017 at 4:00pm

Among the more heart-warming assignments a reporter can get is to cover a naturalization service.

People who are about to be sworn in as U.S. citizens are happy, if not ecstatic, and they are surrounded by friends and families in an atmosphere of good will.

The Daily Sentinel covers the local naturalization services, in Rome and Utica, because they offer human interest stories in which people celebrate freedom.

The most recent ceremony was held last week at Fort Stanwix National Monument with U.S. District Court Judge David N. Hurd presiding. Some 100 people attended the outdoor event with 40 taking the Oath of Allegiance.

There was plenty of pageantry for the new citizens with singing of the National Anthem by barbershop quartet Firestorm and the Presentation of Colors by the RFA Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps.

In all, the new citizens came from 19 nations.

Schools Superintendent Peter C. Blake noted for those present that we can all learn from each other and that sharing cultures and values will only make our nation stronger.

Our new citizens will make our country a better place to live.

Congratulations to the new citizens, and we say thank you.