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Nice morning for first day as citizens
It wasn't just a beautiful morning for Yumans Thursday with temperatures in the 80s, it was an extra-special morning for 28 of the newest citizens of the United States.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services held an ceremony Thursday morning at the Yuma Quartermaster Depot State Historic Park to welcome the new citizens.
In addition to their oath, the group sang along to “God Bless America” with the Kofa High School Royalaires.
After the ceremony, new American citizen Martin Martinez Murrita received hugs and congratulations from members of his family.
Murrita said he had the day off from work so he could attend the ceremony and enjoy the day.
The Yuma Sun interviewed Murrita with the assistance of his daughter, Esperanza,
He's been working toward this moment for six months, he said, and he's very happy to become a citizen.
With his children and grandchild, he'll go celebrate by going out to eat, he said.
With his grandson in his arms, Murrita said he was “excited.”
U.S. Magistrate Judge James F. Metcalf led the ceremony. And it was almost perfect weather - a beautiful break from the high temperatures of summer.
San Luis resident Jose Dario also became a citizen Thursday morning.
Sharing the joy with his mother, Esperanza, and his children, Dario said he had emigrated from the Mexican state of Sonora.
“I feel good (and) glad for this country,” Dario said Thursday after the ceremony. “(I) feel good.”
Dario said he's looking forward to a better life in this country.
His mother is on her way to becoming a citizen, he said, and his children are residents.
Ceremony keynote speaker Andrew Gordon, a counselor to the general counsel with the Department of Homeland Security, congratulated the newest citizens and stressed the importance of immigrating legally.
“To do things right sometimes takes a long time.”
Stephanie A. Wilken can be reached at email@example.com or 539-6857.