Fourth of July

Indiana celebrates 50 new US citizens ahead of Fourth of July

The naturalization ceremony took place just one day before Independence Day

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The stage at Wolf Lake Pavilion in suburban Hammond was full of people who’ve waited years to be able to call themselves American citizens, and that dream came true Wednesday.

“Feels great, so, so great. So good to be a part of this country,” said Sukseir Ghag, a new U.S. Citizen.  “So now I can say I’m from America, I’m American!”

As part of the large naturalization ceremony Wednesday, 50 people received certificates signifying their citizenship and their commitment to being good citizens of the United States.

Virtually every person in the group described the experience as lifechanging, for many reasons.

“This is very important to me because all of my family, my sons, my kids were born here,” said Paula Zepeda, a new U.S. Citizen. “We live here.”

Ghag added, “when I moved to America, I see I can get a lot of options, opportunities to make myself better. To do a lot of things with my life.”

Ghag’s wife, who was born in America, was in attendance to support him.

“We don’t see the complications they do, we don’t know the process they had, what they went through to be on this stage today,” Jagjot Kaur Ghag explained.

Across the U.S., thousands of people are celebrating America’s birthday in a similar way. The office of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services said 11,000 people are gaining their citizenship status this week in 195 ceremonies.

“We are all going to celebrate this and Fourth of July as well!” Ghag said.

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